Pensions: Emmanuel Macron refuses to receive union leaders
It took barely 24 hours for Emmanuel Macron to respond to the letters of the leaders of the eight French unions and five leaders of youth organizations asking to meet him on pension reform. As of this Friday, they received a letter from the Head of State opposing them to an end of inadmissibility.
In his dense two-page letter that “Les Echos” obtained, the Head of State first delivers to employee representatives his account of the work of developing the reform. He starts with a diagnosis that he considers “indisputable” on the financial state of the pension schemes, with in passing the reminder of the decision of the social partners “encouraging employees to retire beyond the age of 64”, a reference to the Agirc-Arrco system.
His account of the development of the reform
Although he does not go so far as to say that the French validated his reform by electing him, he recalls that immediately after his election, he received the social partners to present to them his “principles” which were “at the heart of the presidential campaign. He then insists on the “consultations” carried out by the Prime Minister, Elisabeth Borne, and the Minister of Labour, Olivier Dussopt, evoking the “numerous advances” made leading to a project which he affirms “more just without compromising the financial balance “.
Making no reference to the very constrained framework in which the executive has confined the parliamentary debate and while the government this morning activated the blocked vote in the Senate, he affirms his “duty to preserve this parliamentary time which is currently taking place and which is the very essence of our democracy”, implying that an appointment at the Elysée would disturb him.
Unions “spokespersons” for the discontented
In this context, the message of the Head of State is clear: the unions can well be the “spokespersons” of the discontent of the French, the interlocutors of Emmanuel Macron, it is not the organizations of employees but the latter , including, also, those, “many […] worried about never having a pension”. “I myself answered questions from the French on this subject on several occasions in the field, including recently,” he specifies.
Contenting himself with hailing “the spirit of responsibility which honors you” in which the unions organized the demonstrations against the reform, the extent of which he did not describe, he referred them to “the government [qui] is, as it has always been, at your disposal to move forward in the dialogue, to find innovative solutions, without compromising on the need to restore a lasting balance to our pension system”. Knowing that Elisabeth Borne, has already refused to receive union leaders sending them back to Olivier Dussopt.