DiEM25 and Labour

This page is created on 31 July 2017 to collect and develop ideas for a campaign on the theme of the labour law reforms in France. It is an initiative of the antiausterity.slack.com group. This follows a Zoom meeting on 31 July. Another Zoom meeting is scheduled for Monday 7th August, contact Jakob Mohr for an invitation.

Here is my summary of the political situation, and some points about the changes that Marianne has assembled in French, with my translation into English :

The overall thrust of Macron's labour reforms is to continue the process of “ultra-liberalizing” the labour market. Governments have been working on weakening workers' rights and protections for at least a decade, in particular during the Hollande presidency. The attempted labour reforms of the Valls government (El Khomry law) were attenuated in parliament after strong opposition in the streets. Macron is now pushing to get labour reform done this year, going much further than Hollande/Valls tried to go. He has proceeded by passing legislation which enables the government to rewrite the labour law by issuing regulations : a constitutionally contested process.

Main features of the new code being drafted (I am discovering some of these for the first time, with horror): Official government site : http://travail-emploi.gouv.fr/droit-du-travail/loi-travail-2016/les-principales-mesures-de-la-loi-travail/

• Easier firing of salaried staff (currently, economic justification must be provided)

• annualisation of working time over 3 years!! (e.g. lowering working hours in some months and increasing them in others). Average working hours may be up to 46 hours a week. i.e. abolition of the 40 hour week Lowering of the minimum hours (currently 24 hours a week for part-time work)

• Lowering of overtime rates (previously, minimum +25%, in the new law, +10% will be the norm)

• Less surveillance of workers' health and well-being : abolition of the obligation for an annual medical visit

• Workers will no longer be able to refuse a substantial modification of their work contract : duration and location of work, pay. This has been modified in several stages since 2013, but will be completely “open” from 2017

• Employers will no longer have to give a justification for firing employees. Reduction of appeal period to labour tribunal, from 12 months to 2.

• Inversion of the hierarchy of norms : Enterprise accords will take precedence over branch accords, with the possibility to negotiate exeptions to the work code.

• Capping of indemnities which can be awarded by labour tribunals

• Creation of the “project” work contract : which is like the current fixed-term work contract, but with variable length, and with no precarity bonus

• For civil servants : - freeze of the “point d'indice” (basis for calculating salaries) - separation of the “point d'indice” for the three branches of public service (divide and rule)

According to Laurence Parisot, (former president of the Employers' union), « Life, health, love are insecure, why should work be any different? »

Opposition is growing on the Left and in trade unions. 12th September is the first rendezvous for a demonstration in Paris https://paris.demosphere.eu/rv/56053


Here a summary of the measures laid down in the “ordonnances” (decrees) that the gouvernement announced on august the 31th:

  • - A cap has been imposed on industrial tribunal payments
  • - élargissement des sujets à négocier directement dans l’entreprise - et dans 90 % d’entre elles sans représentants syndicaux ( firms with fewer than 20 staff will be able to negotiate directly with employees on working terms and conditions, bypassing the national union branch) ,
  • - the time limit for complaints reduced from two years to one
  • - fusion de l’ensemble des instances représentatives du personnel,
  • - élargissement des contrats de chantier,
  • -autonomie des branches pour définir les règles d’utilisation des CDD

3 priorities:

1) paper on Macron's reform and situation on France

idea: short and simple! First: explanation on Macron's reform loi travail XXL and its practical consequences ( here some sources http://diem25-connect.eu/wiki/doku.php?id=labour ; https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kIK5hwFsoQY&list=PL3rtD4wZLOlI0eO17MN9UjoSQwm47Q_Kc) Second: similar consequences and reforms on different countries through Europe with dates (i.e jobs act in Italy 2014 and 2015, Spain's reforma laboral in 2012 ang again asked another from Bruxelles last month (http://www.expansion.com/economia/2017/07/17/596c9b6d46163fd0618b458c.html) ) . Third: DiEM25 believes in a diferent policy (examples from the new deal, labour rights, basic income etc). Fourth<. <there is an alternative and ours is a pan European fight. So… a call to common action!

2) call to all DSC's around Europe to a european mobilisation on 12/09/2017

The day 12/09/2012 a general strike is planned, so on same day european solidarity and european concern (european affairs affect all europeans). ex: Sit ins in different cities in front of french embassy or European Parlament in Bruxelles with banners and short messages > Photos > media

3) Paper on neoliberalism on Europe, consecuences and possible solutions / policy proposals from diem

After the french case has been covered do an investigation on the situation of all other european countries. Build positive narrative. Pan european. There is an alternative! ect Narrative: we believe in an alternative, use ideas new deal, solidarity with those who suffer…


Coordinator for this activity: Alexander. Will contact CC next days. A framapad should be done with the paper on French case within next 3 days. After translation in all languages possible. Call for action on media, on email, on DSC's on coordination channels. Talk about it on Bruxelles event!!

UPDATE : 12 SEPT 2017 by Marianne

Propositions in order to counterpart the Macron XXL law : what should be done (found in attac texts + my personal ideas and to be developped):

- condition state's helps to the creation of employment

- State aid should be granted only to the economic sectors that need it

- control and regulate the range of wages within firms

- taxation of capital at the same level as labor taxation

- equal pay for men and women, which would provide more social security contributions for the protection of all

- real progressive taxation and combating certain tax “niches” (struggle against some tax shelters)

- tax fixed-term contracts more and more, as they are renewed (the more CDD you contract, the more the firm is taxed)

- strengthening unions and their diversity (discussing the obligation to subscribe to a union)