- Title: French commuters take pains to get to work as strike enters day 7
- Date: 11th December 2019
- Summary: PARIS, FRANCE (DECEMBER 11, 2019) (REUTERS) VIEW OF TRAIN ARRIVING AND PASSENGERS WAITING TO BOARD SEEN THROUGH TRAIN WINDOW PASSENGERS GETTING OFF TRAIN / OTHERS BOARDING TRAIN CROWD OF PASSENGERS AT RAILWAY STATION (SOUNDBITE) (French) STUDENT, THOMAS ROSSARI, SAYING: "There aren't many trains, and there's a huge amount of people. So it's complicated." PASSENGERS WALKING ACROSS RAILWAY STATION VARIOUS OF CROWD OF PASSENGERS AT RAILWAY STATION (SOUNDBITE) (French) TEACHER/STUDENT, IRENE SPINNER, SAYING: "This makes us run late, we can't get to work on time. Even to go to school is difficult." JOURNALIST ASKING: "It's a pain?" IRENE SPINNER SAYING: "It's a pain." PASSENGERS WALKING VIEW OF TRAIN CARRYING PASSENGERS DEPARTING SEEN THROUGH TRAIN WINDOW / PASSENGERS ON BOARD (SOUNDBITE) (French) OFFICE ADMINISTRATOR, LUDIVINE (NO SURNAME GIVEN), SAYING: "It makes us anxious, above all. The waiting time and having to be here early is okay, but it's the anxiety of being in a crowd, especially in the evening when you get shoved. When you're injured, it's a disaster." LUDIVINE LEANING ON WALKING STICK / JOURNALIST ASKING OFF CAMERA: "And what about the grievances of the strikers?" (SOUNDBITE) (French) OFFICE ADMINISTRATOR, LUDIVINE (NO SURNAME GIVEN), SAYING: "On the other hand, I understand them. Of course I understand their grievances. We're all concerned." TRAIN ARRIVING AS PASSENGERS WAIT TO BOARD TRAIN ARRIVING, PASSENGERS BOARDING AND TAKING SEATS REFLECTION OF WOMAN IN TRAIN WINDOW PASSENGERS GETTING OFF TRAIN CROWD OF PASSENGERS WALKING THROUGH SUBWAY (SOUNDBITE) (French) UNIDENTIFIED COMMUTER, SAYING: "I come from Creil (70 km north of Paris), it's difficult for me to come here. I have to take the RER (commuter train) B to get to Chatelet (in central Paris), I can't take the metro. And I have to get to Nanterre (13 km east of Paris). I don't know how to do it. I'm going to try to get in a train if I can." JOURNALIST ASKING: "It's a pain every day?" COMMUTER SAYING: "Today, I've had it." / COMMUTER WALKING AWAY VARIOUS OF PASSENGERS PASSING TURNSTILES (SOUNDBITE) (French) DAY CARE CENTRE WORKER, EMMA LY CUONG, SAYING: "It already took me one hour more (on public transport), so it takes two hours one way. So four hours a day in transport is exhausting. We have no other option to get to work." CROWD OF PASSENGERS MOVING PASSENGERS BOARDING TRAIN PASSENGERS WALKING UP AND DOWN ESCALATOR PASSENGERS WALKING UPSTAIRS / VIEW OF SUBWAY PASSENGERS WALKING
- Embargoed: 25th December 2019 09:37
- Keywords: Gare du Nord Paris metro commuters pension reform transport strike
- Location: PARIS, FRANCE
- City: PARIS, FRANCE
- Country: France
- Topics: Human Interest / Brights / Odd News,Society/Social Issues
- Reuters ID: LVA001B9J8AX3
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text:French commuters complained on Wednesday (December 11) that their daily work trips takes hours, as a workers' strike against pension reforms dragged on to a seventh day.
On the Gare du Nord railway station, where one of the few running metro lines and RER B commuter line stop, commuters jostled on platforms to get into trains.
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.
"It already took me one hour more (on public transport), so it takes two hours one way. So four hours a day in transport is exhausting. We have no other option to get to work," day care centre worker Emma Ly Cuong told Reuters.
Workers unions have called for more protests on Dec. 12 and Dec. 17 following two mass demonstrations on Tuesday (December 10) and last Thursday (December 12).
French Prime Minister Edouard Philippe is due to unveil the key elements of the government plan to simplify the country's complex pension systems arrangements around noon.
Amid a number of media reports, BFM Television reported that the new pension rules will partially apply to those born in 1975, and only affect retirees from 2037.
President Macron is determined to simplify a system that comprises more than 40 separate pension plans. He says a single, points-based system would be fairer, giving every pensioner the same rights for each euro contributed.
But unions say Macron wants to strip workers of hard-earned benefits in order to balance the state budget.
(Production: Marc de Temple, Michaela Cabrera, Margaryta Chornokondratenko)
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