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Solidaires-Unitaires-Démocratiques à l’Agence France-Presse

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Forfait jours for journalists: No to management’s blackmail

Friday 8 November 2019

All the versions of this article: [English] [français]

In a statement published earlier on Friday, November 8, AFP’s management threatens to take away 5 or 8 days off from HQ status journalists (depending on their posts), accusing SUD of being responsible for this loss.

Printable version

SUD wants to set the record straight:

  • No one is stopping management from awarding all journalists 12 days off, as more than 90 percent had, and all trade unions that defend the interests of staff have demanded.
  • The threat to go hourly accounting, with a 39-hour work week with seven extra days off for production journalists and 35 hours and four extra days off for “other journalists” (in particular those working on desks) is pure blackmail. Management forgets to say that in event the forfait jours contract disappears completely then it will be obliged to compensate overtime, in recuperation days and in cash.
  • Management also forgets to mention that the brutal regime of 39h + 7 RTT / 35h + 4 RTT was invented by the signatories of the “Grand Accord” in order to push as many journalists as possible to take the forfait jours, which is really a mechanism to circumvent the legal 35-hour work week and avoid paying real compensation for overtime worked by journalists.
  • Management’s statement shows it is still in denial: The Paris Court of Appeal ruling on September 19 found the key provision of the accord d’entreprise of March 10, 2017 (the “Grand Accord”) is ILLEGAL. And what did the signatories of the “Grand Accord” do? They signed an accord to prolong the measure declared illegal! We believe this to be illegal.
  • In the negotiations with management, SUD made a counter-proposal that conforms to the law and would immediately secure the 12 additional days off for all journalists while giving time for real talks to solve the difficult issues in 2020. None of the signatories of the “Grand Accord” responded to our counter-proposal, preferring to rush into a new deal which got nothing for staff and reduces the chances of a real rewrite of the “Grand Accord”, which requires time and legal expertise.

This is why SUD filed a lawsuit that asks the Paris District Court to rule on legality of the “delay accord” in a hearing set for November 28 at 14:30.

In the interests of transparency and information, SUD is publishing the lawsuit here.

Documents SUD: the main documents in this case (the Paris Court of Appeal ruling of September 19, 2019, the “delay accord”, SUD’s counter-proposal, etc.) can be found here

Paris, November 8, 2019
SUD-AFP (Solidarity-Unity-Democracy)
contact@sud-afp.org