La cgt
Publié le mercredi 22 mars 2006

CPE - ’First employment Contract’

The CGT is opposed to the government’s new law introducing a new employment contract for young people

The “First Employment Contract” (Contrat Première Embauche) concerns young people under 26 recruited by companies employing over 20 people. It entails a two-year “trial period”, during which they can be dismissed without prior notice nor justification on the part of their employer. The same measure already applies to all age-groups, recruited with a CNE (Contrat Nouvelle Embauche) – New Recruitment Contract – in small businesses (less than 20 employees). Both of these contracts – along with fixed- term contracts for older workers (CDD-Séniors) – introduce a significant amount of flexibility and undermine existing French labour legislation and the limited rights that this currently affords workers.

In the longer term, the CPE will affect all employees, not just young people. This new employment contract is an extension of existing insecure terms of employment. University and high school students have been joined by teachers and the labour movement in general in the anti-CPE campaign. It involves both public and private sectors. Two-thirds of the French population are demanding the withdrawal of the CPE.

The outcome of this campaign could affect everyone in the European Union. If the government wins, it will accelerate the race to the bottom across Europe, as governments compete to drive down pay and attack labour rights.

The CGT – along with all the other French unions, as well as university and high school student organisations - are calling for work stoppages and demonstrations on 28 March throughout France to demand the withdrawal of the CPE.