Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

ENCORE!

Music show: hot hits for the summer season

Read more

FOCUS

Canada: Religious sponsorship of refugees creates controversy

Read more

BUSINESS DAILY

Verizon set to buy Yahoo's internet business

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

As Democrats gather, Russian subplot sparks intrigue

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

Bernard Cazeneuve, the political punching bag

Read more

THE INTERVIEW

Erdogan to rid Turkish institutions of ‘separatist cancer’ after coup attempt

Read more

ENCORE!

The best of summer music festivals in France

Read more

FRANCE IN FOCUS

Going for gold: French athletes train for Rio Olympics

Read more

#TECH 24

Digital beauty

Read more

Europe

Hundreds of thousands march against labour law reforms

Text by News Wires

Latest update : 2012-02-19

Hundreds of thousands of protesters marched in 57 Spanish cities Sunday in protest against new reforms that make it easier for companies to fire workers. Spain’s unemployment rate is nearly 23 percent, one of the highest in the eurozone.

AP - Hundreds of thousands of protesters were marching throughout Spain on Sunday in the first large-scale show of anger over new labor reforms that make it easier for companies to fire workers and pull out of collective bargaining agreements.

The country’s main trade unions organized marches in 57 cities, beginning midmorning in Cordoba in the south and expected to end with evening marches in Toledo and Valencia, with a very large demonstration planned in Madrid from midday.

Union organizers said around a million people had marched by mid-afternoon, but official figures were not released.

Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy’s government passed the package of reforms nine days ago in an effort to shake up a labor market seen as one of Europe most rigid and to encourage hiring in a country battling the highest unemployment rate in the eurozone, at nearly 23 percent. Rajoy was overheard saying that the reform will “cost me a general strike.”

“If we want Spain to grow and create employment, we had to do what we’ve done,” Rajoy said at his Popular Party’s annual congress in southwestern Seville on Sunday.

The government’s sweeping changes allow Spanish companies facing dwindling revenues to pull out of collective bargaining agreements and have greater flexibility to adjust employees’ schedules, workplace tasks and wages, as well as making it easier and less costly to fire workers.

“If the government doesn’t rectify this, we will continue with an ever-growing mobilization,” said General Workers Union spokesman Candido Mendez.

Date created : 2012-02-19

  • SPAIN

    Spain approves tough labour market reforms

    Read more

  • SPAIN

    Spain jobless rate approaches 23 percent

    Read more

  • SPAIN

    Unemployment rate 'astronomical', says Spanish PM

    Read more

COMMENT(S)