For two and a half months, anger has been expressed against this Work law that aims to legalize all kinds of blackmail by employers. Seven days of strikes and inter-branch events have already mobilized many workers and young people. While the media repeated that the mobilization was declining, the events of last Thursday, May 19, strongly refuted this view, bringing more people than the two previous action days. Finally, in the wake of the railway workers and then of the truck drivers, the extension of the strike in refineries and the blockades of fuel depots in solidarity gave a new momentum to the mobilization. And what the media call “blockade” is more often than not a real strike!
With railway workers, truck drivers, dockworkers, refinery workers, this is the time for extending the strikes
In many companies, a minority of workers has been on strike during each demonstration day. But many among us have found out that spaced out events could not make the government back down. Now refinery workers take up the challenge, answering Valls’ posturing and police deployments with an extension of the strike to all refineries.
Better, refinery workers now speak to workers of all sectors, calling them to join in the strike. This is actually the issue of the moment. Yes, from now on, we must bring a new impulse, using the only weapon that the governments and the bosses really fear: the extension of the strikes.
When the rank and file is organized
“General strike!” was chanted in the demonstrations. However, so far, union directions have done nothing to build one. In the most mobilized sectors, as in the railways, they constantly pushed back the deadline for a renewable strike. They have attempted to isolate railway workers with strike days separate from those of other workers. As if the “basis decree” against which the railway workers fight was not the equivalent to the Work Act!
Only now, in different train stations, as in Paris, Tours, Grenoble, Sotteville (near Rouen), workers decided by themselves, in general assemblies, that it was time to start being serious and they have renewed the strike since May 18. In Sotteville, for example, a strike committee was elected that “calls, right now, all railway men to join or to amplify the movement in order to make the fights converge with those of other sectors. Indeed, it would be a shame not to take advantage of the movements of refinery workers, dockers, and others”. In conclusion: “we must all fight together, and together we will win!” This is the tone and the meaning of the votes and the calls recently made by groups of railway workers in many other stations.
Spread the movement
This is why, under pressure from the rank and file in the most mobilized sectors, Philippe Martinez, CGT’s general secretary, until then so timid, has finally decided to call in “a generalization of the strikes everywhere in France.” It was about time.
So this is not the time to get discouraged, but to lead all colleagues to join those who have entered the fight: railway workers, truckers, refinery workers… When fuel depots are blocked, strikes might as well spread like wildfires.
The mobilization against the Work law is at a turning point. The task of those who want to push back the government is to build a global movement. By organizing themselves and deciding collectively in general assemblies. Everywhere, by establishing connections across companies and sectors, by combining our efforts and participating all together in strikes and demonstrations, beginning with May 26.
Paris: Demonstration Thursday, May 26, 2 pm, Bastille Square