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retirement age final approval
By David at 10/27/2010 - 16:02

According to AP, France's parliament has given final approval to a bill to raise the retirement age from 60 to 62, a reform that has sparked weeks of strikes and street protests.  The National Assembly approved the final text of the bill in a 336-233 vote Wednesday, marking its final hurdle in parliament. Conservative President Nicolas Sarkozy is not expected to sign it for several weeks. The vote comes as two straight weeks of pension strikes are losing momentum. Still, unions will not give up, hope to revive the movement Thursday with nationwide street demonstrations and strikes expected to cause new hassles for air travelers.
So far the 2010 strikes in France are a series of ongoing general strikes and demonstrations in France which have occurred during September and October 2010. They have involved union members from both the private and public sectors protesting in cities, including Bordeaux, Lille, Lyon, Marseille, Paris and Toulouse, against a proposal by the French government to raise the normal retirement age for public pensions from 65 to 67 and early reduced pensions from age 60 to 62, which the Assemblée nationale has approved, while temporary pre-crisis taxes cuts are maintained for the benefit of the richest individuals and companies, and top government officials are subject to an ongoing corruption inquiry. Those who object to the changes say the poorest will be most affected by them. The strikes have led to a reduction in public transport services, motorway blockages by lorry drivers and disruption to oil deliveries to refineries leading to a national fuel shortage. French students also joined the workers in the protests with barracades being built at around 400 high schools across the country in order to try to prevent other pupils attending classes.


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