After more than one month monitoring Yellow Vest protests, French police officers who were already feeling overworked, say they have had enough. The third largest union UNSA-Police on Tuesday urged its officers to stay at home, except in the case of an emergency.
“Roundabouts don’t just belong to the Yellow Vests,” the union said in a press release, in reference to the traffic chaos caused by the ‘gilets jaunes’ who have blocked roads in anger over rising fuel prices and taxes.
Police unions are hoping to mirror the Yellow Vest movement, despite the latter losing momentum on the fifth straight weekend of demonstrations.
“The Yellow Vest movement is about purchasing power,” says Alexandre Langlois, the secretary general of the independent police union VIGI. “It would be a shame not not to take up the issue, which concerns us all,” he told RFI.
Tuesday’s strike action is a prelude to three other demonstrations:
Wednesday, police stations are to remain shut
Thursday evening, a demonstration is planned outside the central police station in Paris’ 8th district by a movement called the “blue vests”
Saturday, Act 1 of police demonstrations
The French government is desperately trying to keep its exhausted police force onside following weeks of violent protests demanding economic reforms, improved living standards and the resignation of President Emmanuel Macron.
On Wednesday, French officials met with police trade union leaders to work out a deal to soothe anger in law enforcement ranks regarding overwork, unpaid overtime and difficult working conditions, Le Monde reported.
Related: What Trump got wrong about the riots in France
But some activists are calling on police to walk out on government negotiations, close down police stations and join the “gilets jaunes”—or yellow vest—protesters with whom they have been facing off since November 17.
Overwhelmed by Yellow Vest protests, French police launch ‘slow-down strike’
FRANCE 24 English
Published on Dec 19, 2018
Police stations closed!!!
French officers demand £248m of unpaid overtime in day of protest!!
Union leaders dismissed an offer of a one-off €300 (£270) bonus for 111,000 officers on duty during more than four weeks of “yellow vest” protests as “insufficient”.
Bruno Le Maire, the finance minister, indicated that the government may bow to police demands for some 23 million hours’ overtime pay going back decades, amounting to about €275 million (£248m). “It seems legitimate that they be paid… for extremely difficult work,” he said.
Police officers are also angry over what they say is ageing equipment, including helmets and riot control gear, rundown barracks and proposed budget cuts for 2019.
No-deal Brexit risks a rude economic shock for Germany and fragile eurozone
There is no such thing as Theresa May’s Brexit deal. The Withdrawal Agreement is merely a legal contract to pay £39bn, with the Irish back-stop for good measure.
In exchange, Britain secures a transition phase with no veto rights, bound to accept all fresh EU law even when it threatens the national interest.
On payment of the exit fee we also secure the ‘privilege’ of starting talks on a deal. The terms of that deal must be agreed by all 27 EU states (unlike the Withdrawal Agreement).
h/t Digital mix guy