“The Unsightly Reality of the Parisian Streets: The Strike and Pension Reform”

Paris, a city known for its elegance and beauty, has been overrun with trash due to a strike by waste collectors. The strike, which began on March 6th, is in response to a proposed pension reform bill by President Emmanuel Macron. This bill would increase the retirement age from 62 to 64 and increase the number of years of work required to claim a full pension.[0]

The strike has resulted in over 5,600 tons of uncollected waste piling up on the streets of Paris. The effects of this waste are not equal across the 20 arrondissements in Paris, as some districts are serviced by private waste management companies while others are managed by municipal authorities.[1] Private contractors have been able to keep their areas semi-normal, while municipal areas have seen mountains of trash block metro entrances and sidewalks littered with garbage.[1]

The strike is set to continue for the foreseeable future, with the city’s municipal garbage collectors, cleaners, and truck drivers voting to extend their walkout until at least Monday, March 20th.[1] This has caused an unpleasant atmosphere for tourists, who have encountered overflowing trash bins blocking sidewalks on their travels.

The dispute is also playing out in parliament, where the left and far right adamantly oppose the pension reform bill.[2] The two-thirds of French voters who oppose the reform argue that they want more of their pensions to be paid by the other third, or they simply don’t have a clue.[3] President Macron and his centrist government are counting on their alliance and the center-right Les Republicains party to deliver the necessary votes in the Senate and National Assembly.[2]

The issue of the pension reform has caused a nationwide uproar, and the consequences are being felt in Paris, where the streets are covered in mountains of uncollected waste.[1] The city is hoping for a resolution soon, and a return to its usual elegance and beauty.

0. “Why Now Is Not The Best Time To Visit Paris” Travel Off Path, 15 Mar. 2023, https://www.traveloffpath.com/why-now-is-not-the-best-time-to-visit-paris/

1. “The City of Light is momentarily the City of Trash” News-Decoder, 17 Mar. 2023, https://news-decoder.com/the-city-of-lights-is-momentarily-the-city-of-trash/

2. “City of Light or City of Litter: Paris Reeling From Pension Reform Strikes” Voice of America – VOA News, 15 Mar. 2023, https://www.voanews.com/a/city-of-light-or-city-of-litter-/7006499.html

3. “Is the Future of America Related to Paris Garbage?” Econlib, 18 Mar. 2023, https://www.econlib.org/is-the-future-of-america-related-to-paris-garbage/

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