21st November 2017
French lorry drivers begin week of European disruption
Several unions representing French lorry drivers blocked the entrance to the Fréjus road tunnel in France’s Savoie region − a major transit point for HGVs crossing the Alps between France and Italy − earlier today as part of a week of action organised by the The European Transport Workers’ Federation (ETF) in protest against plans by the European Commission to exclude road haulage from a new EU directive on ‘posted’ workers.
“The aim of the week of action is to convince the European Parliament and the national governments to adopt a social Mobility Package that truly benefits professional drivers. In parallel, actions will be organised at country borders, in parking areas and within the trade unions, to inform professional drivers on the Package’s impact on their jobs and lives,” the ETF said.
The federation and its affiliate members have long-argued that the new directive is an opportunity to combat the distortion of competition in the sector, largely a result of ‘low-cost’ operators from Eastern Europe, while at the same time addressing the exploitation of drivers employed by these firms – who, ETF claims, are paid two or three times less than their counterparts in the western EU.