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News > France

Macron's France: Police Club Harshly at Parisian Firefighters

  • French firefighters protest against working conditions, in Paris, France, Jan. 28, 2020.

    French firefighters protest against working conditions, in Paris, France, Jan. 28, 2020. | Photo: Reuters

Published 28 January 2020

Protesters demand better working conditions and their profession to be recognized as a "high-risk" trade.

French police Tuesday clashed with Paris firefighters who were protesting against their working conditions and asking for an increase in their hazard bonus, which has not changed since 1990.


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"During the march, two firefighters set their suits on fire to symbolize their discontent," Franceinfo reported and added that riot police charged heavily against citizens.

In the attempt to end demonstrations, Police fired tear gas and hit some firefighters with batons, which brought about more tension in the Parisian streets.

One of the firefighters' main demands is an improvement in the so-called "Fire Premium," a bonus that they want to be increased from 19 percent to 28 percent of salary.

They also demand that their profession be recognized as a high-risk trade, which would allow them to retire early​​​​​​.

In France, there are about 248,000 firefighters, of which 40,500 are professionals, 195,000 volunteers, and 12,500 have a particular military status in Paris and Marseille, the country's largest cities.

In Oct. 2019, the French capital's firefighters also protested and called for better pay, guarantees of their pension benefits, and greater respect for their profession.

France has seen widespread labor unrest since December, with unions mobilizing against President Emmanuel Macron's plans to reform the current pension system.

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