The mobilization reaches the mountain peaks. The FO and CGT sections of ski lift and ski area employees filed strike notices on Monday, January 23. The two unions, the majority within the profession, call to stop work on January 31. They thus intend to protest against the new pension reform, but also against the new unemployment insurance scheme for seasonal workers.
The new calculation of unemployment provides for a minimum working time of six months out of the last twenty-four to recharge unemployment rights for six months. Previously, four months of work over two years made it possible to benefit from four months of compensation.
“Employees who received €1,200 now find themselves with €600”, observes Éric Becker, national secretary of Force Ouvrière (FO) ski lifts and ski areas.
Seasonal workers affected by the pension reform
In addition to the reduction in allowances, this calculation also delays the full retirement of employees of ski areas, whose careers are chopped. Periods that are not worked are now taken into account in the calculation of allowances. This mathematically lowers the amount of contributions taken into account for the calculation of retirement, deplore the unions.
With this unprecedented mobilization, the employees call on the executive to better grasp their ” specificities “ and their “constraints”, in its calculation of unemployment benefits. With this new system, “we will no longer find seasonal workers”, fears Éric Becker, while the number of employees in the resort tends to drop each winter.
“Convergence” of situations
That “convergence” of the two issues, unemployment insurance and pension reform, could boost the participation of ski lift employees in the January 31 strike decided by the inter-union. This strike notice is “unlimited”because the date of the second day of mobilization is not yet determined.
But the FO manager does not intend to call for other strike periods during the February school holidays. “We are well aware that the situation is not favorable to companies, which are impacted by energy prices”, he indicates.
For its part, the CGT, which also filed a renewable strike notice, leaves the choice to employees to stop work during the month of February. “The strikers choose the terms of the strike”assured on BFMTV Pierre Scholl, CGT national representative of the ski lifts.