France protests and transport strikes have put the Christmas celebrations on hault for a number of French travelers holding a ticket to reach their loved ones.
France will have its Christmas Eve this year ruined by the nearly three-week standoff between French train drivers and the government over the restructuring of pension reforms as stated the president. The stand-off has however spoiled Christmas plans for tens of thousands of ticket holders wishing to see their loved ones of the merry day.
Workers at the national SNCF and Parisian RATP rail and public transport companies have downed tools to protest at the government’s plan to meld France’s 42 pension schemes into a single points-based one, which would see some public employees lose certain privileges.
There will be no surprises under the Christmas tree for those keen to travel on Tuesday, with up to 40 percent of high-speed rail and express regional trains cancelled, along with up to 20 percent of other trains.
Talks between the government and unions last week failed to find middle ground, and strikers vowed there would be no holiday truce unless the pension overhaul plan was scrapped.
A new poll shows public backing for the strike has dropped by three percentage points, though 51 percent of respondents still expressed support or sympathy for the strikers
However the French the government insists the new system would be fairer and more transparent. But the rigid protests will continue through this cherished holiday taking a heavy toll on businesses for hotels and restaurants during this busy time of the year.