Home | Monday 27th July 2009 | Issue 685
LA LUTTE CONTINUE
Groups of French workers who had been threatening to blow up their factories (see SchNEWS 684), have this week been offered increased redundancy packages to put down the gas canisters and end their factory occupations.
While workers at Nortel have accepted a €7,300 redundancy package, workers at car part manufacturer New Fabris are considering their options following negotiations with the French Industry Minister and Peugeot and Renault – who had been New Fabris’ customers. After disarming their homemade bombs in order to enter into talks last Monday (20th), the workers – who had been holding out for a €30,000 payment - were offered an average statutory severance pay of €17,500 plus a “job-seeker aid” payment of €11,000. However, many of the factory-floor employees would receive considerably less, despite over 20 years service in some cases. Disappointed workers have yet to accept the offer and may yet return to their guns, having stated that “nothing is ruled out.”
Elsewhere in France, workers are continuing with their rather more up-fer-it version of the ‘Summer of Rage’. On Wednesday four managers at Michelin’s plant in Montceau-les-Mines were held over night in another case of “boss-knapping”, while around 100 workers at Swedish-owned ball bearing plant SKF in Fontenay-le-Compte, blockaded the entrance to the site and burned machinery in response to redundancies.
This was followed on Friday (24th) by yet another “boss-knapping” when workers from British company Servisair prevented two managers from leaving the company’s offices. The managers were released the next day following the intervention of bailiffs.