Support French rail strikers

Workers in national and local rail services in France are on strike to defend their pensions - and they need our support! All grades on the French railway system have been taking strike action as part of a national, general strike movement to force the government to withdraw its proposed pension reform bill. The pensions reform that Sarkozy's government is planning would see early retirement entitlement be taken away from rail workers with physically demanding jobs, and see other workers' retirement ages pushed up by at least two years. Sarkozy has said that he wants to be the 'French Thatcher' - and this pensions bill is an attempt to pick a fight with the unions and try to break their power. If the government wins on this pensions reform, other, worse attacks will soon follow.

Rail workers, alongside workers in many other sectors from oil refineries to docks to road haulage to education, are on what's called "reconductible" strike - they have meetings in their workplace every morning and take a vote on whether or not to continue the action for another day. Messages sent by UK trade unionists to French rail workers can be read out in these morning meetings, and give the strikers a boost that could help keep the strike solid. Messages of support from individual activists and branches to national and suburban rail workers at stations in Paris can be sent via

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