Emergency Food Supply

Paris Garbage Strike: 10,000 Tons of Trash Piling Up in French Capital

Paris is facing a crisis as sanitation workers continue their strike against President Emmanuel Macron's pension reform bill, which proposes to raise the retirement age from 62 to 64. As a result, over 10,000 tons of rubbish have piled up in the streets of the French capital, blocking doorways, pavements, and causing a stench in the city.[0] The garbage collectors have been on strike since March 6th, and have extended their walkout for at least another five days.[1]

The piles of uncollected trash have grown in the city and have caused a significant health risk to both the refuse collectors and the general population.[2] In addition to this, rats have been rummaging in the bins and leaving their urine and droppings.

The strikers, who are mainly garbage collectors and truck drivers, are opposed to their retirement age being pushed back from 57 to 59 if the new law is passed.[3] The CGT union has said that this would be ‘unfair’. The mayor of Paris, Anne Hidalgo, is also supporting the social movement against the pension reform bill, saying “The claim of the garbage collectors of the City of Paris who legitimately wish not to work two more years is fair.”[4]

Furthermore, the strike has also affected the three waste incinerators in the Paris suburbs, which have been blocked by the striking staff.[5] The crisis is far from over, and with the strike expected to last until at least Monday 20th March, Parisians are hoping for a resolution soon.

0. “Parisian streets littered with trash after wave of strikes” CNN, 12 Mar. 2023, https://www.cnn.com/2023/03/11/europe/paris-trash-strikes-intl/index.html

1. “Paris is stinking” The Spectator, 15 Mar. 2023, https://www.spectator.co.uk/article/paris-is-stinking/

2. “Watch: Tons Of Garbage Pile Up In Paris As Pension Strike Continues, Rat Invasion Feared” NDTV.com, 16 Mar. 2023, https://www.ndtv.com/world-news/watch-garbage-piles-up-in-paris-as-pension-strike-continues-people-fear-rat-invasion-3861874

3. “City of blight: Paris visitors alarmed at trash strike” Bangkok Post, 14 Mar. 2023, https://www.bangkokpost.com/world/2527824/city-of-blight-paris-visitors-alarmed-at-trash-strike

4. “Heaps of rubbish draw rats (and tourists) in Paris” The Times, 14 Mar. 2023, https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/heaps-of-rubbish-draw-rats-and-tourists-in-paris-0jztzp2pn

5. “Garbage piles up in Paris as refuse workers continue strike” Xinhua, 17 Mar. 2023, https://english.news.cn/20230318/ebd91877631e47d0b33aaf1e09da3361/c.html

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