Fresh strike action planned for French ski resorts

Striking workers in ski resorts across France have called for a new day of protests in their ongoing dispute with the government over reforms to the unemployment benefits system.

Fresh strike action planned for French ski resorts
Photo: AFP

Around 50 ski resorts have been affected by strike action this week, with the 'protest day' Saturday February 15th bringing the worst disruption.

Now the two unions involved have called for a second day of protest on Monday, February 24th.

The CGT and FO unions say it is too early to say exactly how many resorts will be affected, but they are expecting it to be a similar number to the February 15th protests.

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That day saw ski lift operators in some resorts stopping work for part of the day, while in other places they simply handed out leaflets.

There were also pickets, roadblocks and demonstrations in front of several local government offices.

The dispute is over changes to the unemployment benefits system in France, which unions say unfairly affect the seasonal workers upon whom ski resorts rely.

It is expected that ski lifts in many resorts will be out of action for several hours of the day on Monday.

The resorts where workers took action last week are; 

Savoie: Les Arcs, Tignes, La Plagne, Courchevel, Méribel Alpina, Val d'Isère,  La Rosière, Val Fréjus, Val Cenis, Les Sybelles, Les Menuires, Val Thorens, Valmorel, Tignes, Valloire, Les Karellis, St Colomban des Villards, Valmeinier, Savoie Grand Revard, Val d'Isère

Isère: Les Deux Alpes, Alpe d'Huez, Chamrousse

Haute-Savoie: Chamonix, La Clusaz, Avoriaz, Les Gets, Flaine, Les Carroz, Megève, Grand Bornand, Val d'Arly
Hautes Alpes: La Meije, Serre Chevalier, Les Stations du Queyras, Risoul, Les Orres, Pra-Loup (04), Puy St Vincent, Orcières
Pyrénées: Grand Tourmalet, Ax Trois Domaines, Font Romeu, Piau Engaly, Cambre d'Aze, Porté Puymorens, Les Angles, Formiguères, Font Romeu Pyrénées 2000, Grand Tourmalet, Cauterets, Luz Ardiden, Val Louron and Altiservice St Lary
Vosges: Gerardmer
Jura: Monts Jura 
Massif Central: Le Lorian 
Alpes du Sud: Montgenèvre, Serre Chevalier, Risoul, Vars, Val d'Allos



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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.