After the strike which mobilized hundreds of thousands of people on Thursday, it is the turn of the youth to pound the pavement this Saturday.
A dozen youth organizations are marching this Saturday in Paris against the pension reform, actively supported by La France insoumise which hopes to "bounce back" on the success of Thursday's inter-union mobilization.
The organizers do not intend to bring together the million or two million demonstrators – according to police or CGT estimates – who were mobilized throughout France on Thursday.
But Philippe Juraver, head of LFI's "struggle network", "hopes to do better than in October", a reference to the "march against the high cost of living" organized by the mélenchonistes and which had drained 140,000 participants according to the organizers , 30,000 according to the police.
However, doing better is not won.
The movement founded by Jean-Luc Mélenchon was more timid in its communication to organize this event, preferring to hide behind ten youth organizations.
Young people “first concerned”
"We realized that the young people wanted to put themselves forward, that they felt the first concerned," says Philippe Juraver.
Who admits that LFI was also aware of having to show their credentials to the unions, "offended" that the date was announced before theirs.
“So in the communication, we were very careful, it was only for a few days, after the announcement of the date of the 19th, that we increased the communication for the 21st”, he explains.
The Divided Nupes
First thorn in the side, the Unef, the main student union, will not participate.
"Because we are convinced that to bend this pension reform, we must have a united union front, to organize the fight as broadly as possible", justifies Imane Ouelhadj, its president.
And, contrary to the "march against the high cost of living", the left alliance Nupes does not support this initiative either, EELV, PCF and PS believing that it is necessary, for pensions, to let the unions do their thing.
“In this hard and long battle, we will have to respect the calendar of the trade union organizations”, without “dispersing”, thus warned the leader of the communists Fabien Roussel, Friday on RTL.
Conversely, LFI MP Aurélie Trouvou, used to attempting mediation between the left and the unions, believes that the role of politicians "is to mobilize other sectors, youth, retirees, entrepreneurs, women".
“We cannot afford the luxury of competition in our social camp”, also pleads the NPA, which will send in the procession its spokespersons Olivier Besancenot and Pauline Salingue.
But even within political formations, the strategies are different.
"EELV and other parties have decided to wait for the date of the inter-union", but "it was important to mobilize early (and announce it) from December, because young people cannot wait", believes Clovis Daguerre, Young Ecologists.
Young people fear “a reduction in the number of jobs”, explains Noémie Stickan, representative of the FIDL high school student union.
And they want more generally to "say stop to this antisocial measure" of postponing the retirement age to 64 years.
Alongside the Student Alternative or the Voix Lycéenne, the youth movements of the left-wing parties will take the lion's share of the demonstration: the Young Rebellious, the Young Ecologists, the Young Generations, Place Publique Jeunes and the NPA Jeunes.
"Saturday we play 'Coucou nous revoilou' behind the youth organizations", wrote Jean-Luc Mélenchon on Thursday evening.
The media “wish, thinking to dissuade, to make it a 'march of political parties' and even as usual a 'march of Mélenchon'.
We have already seen what it gave in the recent past: it attracts!
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Pension reform 2023
La France Insoumise (LFI)