Air France staff announce two more days of April strikes

Thousands of passengers are set to be affected by further strikes by Air France staff, after unions announced two more days of industrial action in April.

Air France staff announce two more days of April strikes
Photo: AFP
More strikes were announced by the unions representing Air France staff on Monday in response to an ongoing dispute over wages.
Staff will now strike on Tuesday April 3rd and Saturday April 7th.
That's on top of the action already planned for March 30th (Good Friday), which looks like causing a major Easter headache for some travellers. 
Unions representing pilots, cabin crew and ground staff have called the strikes to demand a 6 percent pay rise across the board to make up a loss of their spending power in recent years due to stagnating wages.
Management is offering a basic increase of 1 percent to be paid in two installments and a range of incentives, which trade unions have dismissed as “small change”.
The unions representing Air France staff have said they will toughen up the pace of the strike action in the face of the airline management which they say has “offered no concrete response” to the demands already expressed during the strikes of February 22nd and March 23rd. 
The unions also accuse the airline's management of “seeking to create division”. 
Negotiations are set to continue between the union and Air France's management on Tuesday so there may yet be a chance that the strikes are called off..
The airline was forced to cancel a quarter of its flights due to a strike on Friday which left just 70 percent of its long-haul flights and 80 percent of the airline's medium-haul flights in operation.
The call to strike was answered by some 35 percent of pilots, 31 percent of cabin crew staff as well as 29 percent of ground staff.
The airline advised passengers by text message if their flights had been cancelled but also told people to change their journey plans free of charge if possible.

French rail strikes: The 37 days to avoid train travel in France this spring



French customs officers strike over job cuts

Customs officers across France will walk out on Thursday in protest at job cuts that unions say will “weaken the customs network”.

French customs officers strike over job cuts

The national strike on Thursday, March 10th is expected to lead to delays at ports, airports and on the Eurostar.

The strike, which will include a rally outside the National Assembly building in Paris, was called by the CFDT-Douane and has the support of other unions. 

A work-to-rule protest over pay and conditions by customs officers in 2019, under the shadow of Brexit, led to delays and disruption at airports, as well as ports including Calais and Dunkirk, and on Eurostar trains.

Unions are calling on the government to axe plans to switch responsibility for import duty collection to the Direction Générale des Finances Publiques by 2024, at the cost of 700 customs’ officer jobs – and, according to strikers, tens of billions of euros to State coffers.

“We are asking for the reforms to be stopped, mainly that of the transfer of taxation, which is disorganising the network with the elimination of nearly a thousand jobs,” CFDT-Douane’s secretary general David-Olivier Caron said.

The planned job cuts come after years of restructuring and streamlining that has seen thousands of positions disappear, the unions say, when customs fraud and smuggling is rising because of a lack of resources.