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French rail unions call national train strike

French rail unions have called for a national day of strike action to demand wage increases.

French rail unions call national train strike
Photo by CLEMENT MAHOUDEAU / AFP

The national rail strike is planned for Wednesday, July 6th, the day before French schools break up for the summer.

Three of the biggest rail unions – CFDT, Sud-Rail and CGT – have joined the strike call while a fourth, Unsa, is set to announce whether it will join next week.

They are demanding wage increases to help their members cope with the cost of living crisis, saying: “Railway workers are being hit hard, and are suffering a clear and sharp decline in their purchasing power.

They are asking for “measures to catch up with inflation in wages”, but also “a general increase in wages and the revaluation of all allowances, bonuses and indemnities”.

The strike notice issued is for a one-day action.

French workers in essential industries including rail are required to give bosses 48 hours notice of whether they intend to strike – this will allow rail operator SNCF to draw up strike timetables with limited services running. These will be published on Tuesday evening before the strike on Wednesday.

French schools break up for the summer on Thursday, July 7th and the following weekend is usually one of the busiest weekends on the railways as families depart for summer holidays. 

The strike covers employees on SNCF, and will not affect city public transport services such as the Paris Metro, although some of Paris’ regional RER and Transilien services are run by SNCF. 

Air travel in France has already been hit by strike action as airport employees and flight attendants have filed strike notices as they too demand wage increases to cope with the increased cost of living.

READ ALSO How strikes and staff shortages will affect France this summer 

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STRIKES

Ryanair strikes in France cancelled after agreement with French pilots

Pilots flying for Ryanair out of several French airports were set to be on strike this weekend over disputes regarding pay and working conditions, but after reaching an agreement with the company the industrial action will be called off.

Ryanair strikes in France cancelled after agreement with French pilots

Holidaymakers will be happy to hear that walk-outs involving French Ryanair pilots, which were scheduled for several French airports the weekend of July 23rd and 24th, have been called off.

The union representing French pilots working for Ryanair has reached an agreement with the company, and thus have cancelled their walk-out scheduled for this weekend (July 23rd and 24th). The strike was intended to impact Marseille, Toulouse, Bordeaux and Beauvais airports.

Pilots with Ryanair in Spain are also covered by the agreement, and therefore will cancel their planned to strike, which was set to take place from July 25th to 28th.

The company said in a statement that the agreement will include a return to pre-pandemic salary levels, as employees had accepted pay cuts during the crisis to keep the company afloat. As a result, the union representing pilots, SNPL, announced planned industrial action has been cancelled, as shown in union’s tweet below.

Belgian pilots with Ryanair, who have also been planning on strike this weekend, do not seem to be concerned by this agreement. You can find a list of affected flights flying out of or arriving in Belgium HERE.

Keep up to date on industrial action in France by checking our summer strike timetable.

READ MORE: France’s summer 2022 strike timetable for roads, rail and air travel

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