GayandRight

My name is Fred and I am a gay conservative living in Ottawa. This blog supports limited government, the right of the State of Israel to live in peace and security, and tries to expose the threat to us all from cultural relativism, post-modernism, and radical Islam. I am also the founder of the Free Thinking Film Society in Ottawa (www.freethinkingfilms.com)

Wednesday, March 23, 2005

End of 35-Hour Work Week in France

France is now in the process of revoking it's 35-hour work week. The shorter work week has proved to be a huge drain on the economy
But with unemployment at 10 percent, politicians of all stripes acknowledge that the country's unique 35-hour law has failed in its original ambition: to force employers to hire massively. What's more, there are strong signs that it hurt living standards as employers froze salaries to make up for lost labor.
Amid soaring unemployment and stagnating wages, the reform is supported by jobseekers and even by factory workers, according to a survey that pollsters CSA published last month — and by 46 percent of the overall population, with 43 percent opposed.

There are other signs that the vision expounded by former Prime Minister Lionel Jospin's Socialists now rings hollow in some surprisingly left-wing constituencies.

Often touted as the working mother's godsend, the 35-hour week actually made life harder for poorer women and single parents, according to women's organization CLEF.

"The women that suffered were the lowest paid, who needed all the overtime they could get to make ends meet," said CLEF president Monique Halpern. "I think this is one of the reasons that Lionel Jospin lost the elections."

Clara Gaymard, the globe-trotting head of the French International Investment Agency, contends the 35-hour week has damaged investment in France, mainly because of its negative image in countries like the United States — France's biggest source of investment.
Hat Tip: Right Thinking from the Left Coast

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