Employees sacrificed by their companies no longer want to let it go. At the initiative of the CGT of TUI France, they will start this Saturday at 2 p.m. from the National Assembly to the headquarters of the Medef. Lazare Razkallah, CGT secretary general of the tour operator’s CSE, behind the action, explains the objective.
Where did the desire of TUI employees to organize a joint action with other dismissed workers come from?
Since our management announced to us in June a PSE (social plan) providing for the elimination of 600 out of 900 positions at TUI France, we have led several mobilizations with the CGT to oppose it. We were received at the Ministry of the Economy, at the Ministry of Labor. Each time, we were told that they had no power and that the situation was completely normal since TUI and the tourism sector had suffered from the crisis. However, TUI received public money and benefited from partial unemployment. It was a real masquerade. Faced with this unleashed liberalism, we said to ourselves that we had to go see what was happening elsewhere and that it would be better to unite. So we looked for contacts, we called comrades from Cargill, Bridgestone, Auchan, Total. We set up the mobilization together.
How is the situation of TUI employees similar to that of workers in other companies with which you are going to demonstrate?
Our businesses are different, but ultimately, we all go through the same thing. Our directorates have money, they even received government aid, but they take advantage of this to fire us. It is because we are in the same situation, that we speak the same language, that this union of struggles has been established so easily. It is an initiative that started from below, even if we were supported by elected Communists and France Insoumise, and that the Confederation of the CGT was very interested and helps us with logistics.
What do you hope for from this joint action?
I hope that many will be mobilized so that this alerts the French and employees to the unacceptable situation we are going through. Macron keeps saying “whatever the cost”, but there has never been “whatever the cost” since, at TUI, 600 of my comrades and I will be made redundant. The covid uninhibited the bosses and the government, they took the opportunity to do anything with employment. With this mobilization, we want to ask the government once and for all to prohibit companies from laying off workers if they have received public money.
The employees of TUI were informed in June by their management of a PES against which you have been fighting since. Where are you ?
We are still struggling. We even took it to court. We filed a summary in December to have the PSE canceled. We learned last Wednesday that it was rejected, to which we will respond with a cassation appeal. On March 2, our case will be brought before the Administrative Court and we will demonstrate that the dismissal plan is flawed, in particular because the TUI group has the means, and because the employees have not had the right to any support. We will have the verdict on March 23.