criticism rains down on Christmas strike

The SNCF is on strike on Saturday December 24 and Sunday December 25, the Christmas weekend. Thousands of travelers find themselves unable to join their families for the holidays. A situation that arouses many criticisms from the management of the company as well as from the government.

The Minister of the Economy, Bruno Le Maire, demanded Thursday, December 22 from the management of the SNCF that it resolve “in the next few hours” the controllers’ strike which led to the cancellation of many TGVs during the Christmas weekend.

“What we expect from the management of the SNCF today is that it finds a solution in the next few hours, I mean in the next few hours. This is the responsibility of the management of the SNCF, it has the support of the State, it must find the ways and means to get out of this conflict “said Bruno Le Maire on South Radioexpressing his “angry for customers deprived of Christmas holidays”.

“Too late” for this weekend

SNCF President Jean-Pierre Farandou called for “the responsibility of the TGV board captains” so that they do not maintain their strike movement on New Year’s weekend.

“For this weekend, it’s unfortunately too late (…), but there is no reason to punish the French twice”he insisted on RTL, referring to the last weekend of the year. “I don’t understand this strike. There is no strike call from any union.he added, specifying that he would receive them on Friday to try to find a way out of the crisis.

Strike at the SNCF at Christmas, “it’s not worthy” and that “damages the right to strike”protested the Minister of Territorial Cohesion, Christophe Béchu, while dismissing the idea of ​​​​requisitions.

“I think that deciding to strike on December 24 and 25 undermines the right to strike. After the years that we have known, there is this need to find each other. (…) 200,000 French people who will not be able to take their train to spend Christmas with their loved ones, it is not worthy”said the minister on France 2.

“It’s a lose-lose situation for everyone. We have at the same time French people who will be deprived of trains, a movement which is not good for the image of the company, but which is also not good for the strikers nor for the demands they are carrying. . »

The impossible requisition

Asked about the possibility of resorting to requisitions as had been done this fall during the strikes at TotalEnergies, Christophe Béchu dismissed this idea, judging that “this is not an applicable solution” and that it wouldn’t be “unconstitutional”.

“It is through negotiation that we get out of this type of situation”he said. “My message and that of the whole government, it is very simple, is to call the strikers to responsibility (…) and at the same time a call to the management of the SNCF to maintain and renew the dialogue”hammered Christophe Béchu.

“At Christmas, we do not go on strike”also stormed government spokesman Olivier Véran. “I obviously do not question the right to strike or the right of employees to demonstrate or to mobilize but frankly, is it essential to do so on a Christmas weekend? The answer is no “estimated the minister on France Inter.

The minister delegate for transport, Clément Beaune, affirmed Thursday that the strike of the SNCF controllers would cost “probably a hundred million euros to the company” public, calling for the resumption of discussions.

“Fortunately, there are tens of thousands of railway workers (…) who see that it is bad for the company. It will probably cost the company a hundred million euros, we don’t need that at the moment and so everyone has to resume this discussion.he said at the microphone of France info.

A difficult dialogue

The controllers had already gone on strike the first weekend of December. Since November, the SNCF has struggled to establish a dialogue with the collective organizing the movement. The strikers demand better recognition of the specificity of their profession and reject any acquaintance with the unions, even if they had to rely on the latter to file notices.

Management has proposed to increase the “work allowance” captains (the official name of the controllers) of €600 per year, part of which would be integrated into their salary in 2024, as well as an additional allowance of €600 gross per year.

Proposals deemed sufficiently satisfactory for the Unsa-Ferroviaire to withdraw its notice and for the CGT-Cheminots and SUD-rail not to call for the work to be stopped. But hundreds of controllers decided otherwise.


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