May 1: “The unions are caught up in the themes imposed by the government”

Last year, the parade of 1er-Mai had been virtual. This Saturday, despite a still complicated health context, the unions decided to reinvest in the street, with the desire to show that they are “There and there”, while the threat of a return to austerity looms. “I believe that the 1er-May arrives a bit like a breath of fresh air for all the activists, the employees ”, rejoices to AFP Philippe Martinez, the secretary general of the CGT, who plans “Between 80 and 100” gatherings throughout France.

Philippe Martinez (CGT): “We feel a desire to radically change”

Nevertheless, the 1er-May is no longer as unifying as it used to be, or even falls into disuse. To the point of anticipating the end of the union parades? And the weakening of wage demands? Answers with Dominique Andolfatto, professor of political science at the University of Bourgogne-Franche-Comté and author of numerous books, including “Anatomie du syndicalisme”, to be published on June 3 (at the University Press of Grenoble). Interview.

1er-May is no longer the day for the great union demonstrations. What is at stake for the unions today?

There are two designs of the 1er-May. The unions, heirs to the workers’ movement – the CGT, FO, FSU and South – are still marching in the name of fairly general slogans such as purchasing power, the defense of social protection and freedoms. They remain attached to the classic parades. Other more reformist unions, which do not

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