Paris, overflowing with garbage: 500 tons of waste accumulate in the streets

Thousands of garbage bags accumulated this Sunday in the French capital, with 5,400 tons of waste without being lifted as a result of a pickers’ strike which has been going on for seven days, in the framework of the protests in rejection of the reform of the pension system.

In addition to the collection, three garbage incineration plants located near Paris were also stopped, which explains why in some neighborhoods, the bags occupy the entire sidewalk, according to the mayor’s office itself.

Municipality agents collect garbage in half the city while the other is managed by private borrowers.

The CGT union says that garbage collectors and drivers can currently retire at 57 without bonuses, an age that would be delayed to 59 if the pension reform is approved.

The project, promoted by President Emmanuel Macron, seeks to bring the retirement age from 62 to 64 by 2030 and brings forward to 2027 the requirement to contribute 43 years – and not 42 as up to now – to collect a full pension.

The union assures that the vast majority of the staff of the waste and water management department have a life expectancy of between 12 and 17 years less than that of the rest of the workers.

Pickers “are the first victims of this reform” because “many times they started working young,” said Christophe Mouterde, a representative of the workers. “They do a harder job than other people who are in offices,” he added.

The French Senate approved hours ago the controversial reform, which still must be voted on in the National Assembly, the Lower House, this week.

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According to polls, two out of three Frenchmen oppose the Executive’s plan to delay the retirement age from 62 to 64 by 2030 and to bring forward to 2027 the requirement to contribute 43 years (and not 42 as before) to collect a full board.

The rejection was reflected in massive protests, but also in strikes in transport and the energy sector.

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