'Black Tuesday' strike throws French railways off track

Apr 03, 2018, 6:46 AM EDT
Street protest against French President Emmanuel Macron’s overhaul of labour laws in 2017.
(Source: Jeanne Menjoulet/flickr)

French railway network crippled on the opening day of a wave of strikes as the staff at the state railway SNCF staged “Black Tuesday” protests against President Emmanuel Macron’s plans to revamp labor laws and liberalize the economy.

With more than 75 percent of the drivers and nearly half of the staff walking out on the first day of the three-month train stoppages, some 4.5 million passengers in France will feel the heat of the disruption, notes The Guardian.

Although common life will be affected, Macron is relatively optimistic about the rail strike for three reasons – the government’s intention to reform comes as a part of election promise and hasn’t shot up abruptly, the level of sympathy for SNFC staff remains low and the options for commuters are present, writes the BBC.