pensions

For the first time in 23 years, 2.5 million pensioners will not receive their half yearly adjusted pension rise, writes George Zangalis.

The cracks in Prime Minister Emmanuel Macron's neoliberal government are beginning to show and the strikes are continuing to broaden, writes John Mullen.

On January 14–17, fresh strikes and demonstrations took place across France.

According to media reports, several French ports were blocked by a 72-hour strike by members of the Confédération Générale du Travail (CGT), as part of the ongoing mass transportation strikes over Prime Minister Emanuel Macron’s attacks on the pension system.

The CGT called a 72-hour walk-out starting from January 14 and for pickets on January 17, in what the union has called “opération ports morts” (operation dead ports).

On December 10, surrounded by union leaders and foreign dignitaries, President Evo Morales announced Bolivia’s new pension law at the headquarters of the Bolivian Workers Central (COB), the country’s militant national trade union federation. The unprecedented and highly symbolic event was the result of a four-year negotiating process, during which the COB agreed to suspend its mobilisation for higher wages in exchange for comprehensive pension reform.
Workers and students mobilised in their millions on October 12 in the fourth and largest mobilisation in the last month against laws that will reduce the pension entitlements of French workers. The protests and strikes come the French Senate has begun passing aspects of the pension bill that will see an increase in the retirement age from 60 to 62 years of age and increase the qualifying period that workers must work to receive a full pension.
The political situation in France is dominated by the mobilization against the proposed reform of the pension system. This reform is at the heart of Sarkozy’s austerity policy. Although it is presented as an obvious demographic necessity, it is meeting increasing opposition in public opinion.
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