- Title: Parisians tread through transport woes as strike hits seventh day
- Date: 11th December 2019
- Summary: PARIS, FRANCE (DECEMBER 11, 2019) (REUTERS) PASSENGERS FACING SIGN READING (French): "SOCIAL MOVEMENT" AT MONTPARNASSE TRAIN STATION PASSENGERS LOOKING AT SCREENS WITH TRAINS TIMETABLE TRAIN ARRIVING TRAIN STATION WORKER SHOWING DIRECTION FOR PASSENGERS TOURIST, JOCELYNE LAMANDE, AT STATION (SOUNDBITE) (French) PARIS VISITOR FROM NANTES, JOCELYNE LAMANDE, SAYING: "I think some people are tired because they woke up early and because they walked a lot. I myself have been walking kilometres in Paris for five days now. But in the end, would this have an impact on the government decision-making? I remain pretty sceptical." PASSENGERS WALKING WOMAN TALKING TO TRAIN STATION WORKER TRAVELER, SONIA ERHARD, AT TRAIN STATION (SOUNDBITE) (French) SAINT-OUEN RESIDENT WHO IS TAKING TRAIN TO LE MANS, SONIA ERHARD, SAYING: "People are not going on strike for no reason, and if they are on strike, it means that something's not right. And I think a lot of things are not going right these days. Surely, I am personally impacted by this strike too, as a commuter, but I completely understand that we need to fight for some things. But is this the right way to do so? I don't know." PASSENGERS CARRYING THEIR LUGGAGE WALKING PASSENGERS WALKING (SOUNDBITE) (French) 75-YEAR-OLD PARISIAN PENSIONER, MARIE CHOQUET, SAYING: "I think he (Prime Minister Edouard Philippe) will make some compromises, but I think the main idea of the reform will remain the same. I think we really have to put some thought into it, because honestly, we cannot continue with the same system considering the increasing number of seniors. It's impossible." VARIOUS OF PASSENGERS SITTING (SOUNDBITE) (French) 36-YEAR-OLD PARISIAN, SOULEYMANE KARAMOKO, SAYING: "It's very difficult because all our plans are cancelled, we can't go to our appointments, we can't go to work, nothing. There are no trains, no metro, no buses. It's really hard." TRAIN DEPARTING PEOPLE WALKING OUTSIDE MONTPARNASSE TRAIN STATION GOPRO SHOT OF PEOPLE RIDING BICYCLES FROM CYCLIST'S PERSPECTIVE GOPRO SHOT OF BICYCLE HANDLEBAR FROM CYCLIST'S PERSPECTIVE GOPRO SHOT OF TRAFFIC ON ROAD FROM CYCLIST'S PERSPECTIVE GORPO SHOT OF TRAFFIC ON ROAD
- Embargoed: 25th December 2019 12:24
- Keywords: France strike Paris commuters protests train station
- Location: PARIS, FRANCE
- City: PARIS, FRANCE
- Country: France
- Topics: Lawmaking,Government/Politics
- Reuters ID: LVA001B9J8P53
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: Paris residents and tourists crowded on Wednesday (December 11) at Montparnasse train station, attempting to get to their destinations amid public transport disruptions caused by ongoing workers' strike against pension reform.
In Paris, 10 out of 16 metro lines remained shut, while only 1 out of 3 trains on the RER B commuter line was running. Circulation on other RER lines were also disrupted.
"People are not going on strike randomly, and if they are on strike, it means that something's not right. But is this the right way to do so? I don't know," Sonia Erhard, who has to take train to get to Le Mans from Saint-Ouen, told Reuters.
Prime Minister Edouard Philippe announced on Wednesday he would replace a convoluted system of more than 42 separate state-funded plans with a universal, points-based system that will apply to those entering the job market for the first time in 2022.
One union leader dismissed the plan as "a joke".
Philippe did however show some flexibility to unions over the timing of its implementation, saying anyone within 17 years of retirement would be exempt - a longer period than the five years initially envisaged.
Unions were nonetheless swift to denounce the proposals and showed no sign of backing down in a battle of political will that could make or break Emmanuel Macron's presidency. They have called for more protests on Dec. 12 and Dec. 17 following two mass demonstrations on Tuesday (December 10) and last Thursday (December 12).
(Production: Clotaire Achi, Martin Esposito, Ardee Napolitano)
- Copyright Holder: REUTERS
- Copyright Notice: (c) Copyright Thomson Reuters 2019. Open For Restrictions - http://about.reuters.com/fulllegal.asp
- Usage Terms/Restrictions: None