Magazine of the Socialist Party in Australia

French workers oppose cuts

Over the past two years the French president Hollande has been implementing increasingly severe austerity measures. He has cut billions of Euros from public spending while providing €41 billion in tax handouts to big business. These businesses have in turn attacked the pay and conditions of workers.

By Meredith Jacka, Socialist Party

Hollande claims these measures are designed to repair the economy, but the truth is the cuts are designed to make ordinary people pay for a crisis they didn’t create.

This is leading to a growing discontent amongst ordinary people and a slumping in popularity for Hollande’s bogus Socialist/Green coalition.

Last month 55% of the nation’s rail workers went out on strike against so called reforms that will lead to the effective privatisation of the National Rail Service. Across the manufacturing industry and postal service many other workers have taken industrial action against pay cuts, redundancies, closures and privatisations.

While these strikes are a good start, they are still too disparate to force the hand of the government and employers. The next step needs to be for the unions to call a one day general strike, which would bring together different trade unions, students and community organisations.

Only by escalating the action will Hollande’s austerity measures be stopped.

For more news and analysis from France visit: