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(en) France, UCL - Pension reform and the Darmanin law: the double racist penalty (ca, de, fr, it, pt, tr)[machine translation]

Date Mon, 20 Mar 2023 09:35:49 +0200

In France, racialized people are often confined to salaried jobs that are less well paid, more difficult, more precarious, as well as to choppy careers. The reform project will only aggravate the already unequal relationship to retirement for immigrant populations or people from post-colonial immigration. ---- Who says low wages, says low contributions and therefore lower pensions. Pushing back the legal retirement age is the assurance of lowering the latter even more. In addition, due to the arduous nature of the jobs held, it is often difficult to work until the age of 60 in good health. Added to the divided nature of careers, meeting the quarters required for a complete retirement becomes a real ordeal. All this to end up with a miserable pension and a reduced life expectancy. And if in addition, one is an immigrant and wishes to return to his country, it is not even possible to hope to count on the ASPA to compensate since it is conditioned on a residence obligation of more than 6 month a year!

Massive racist discrimination (in hiring, in the workplace, etc.) indeed leads to careers that are even more divided than those of other workers. Immigrants, like those from immigrant backgrounds, are thus overrepresented in the statistics for temporary work, fixed-term contracts, subsidized contracts, etc. For racialized women, it is the double penalty since the racist division of labor combines with the sexist one to confine them to the most precarious sectors: cleaning, home help, caregivers, childminders. They are the convicts of feminized sectors where precariousness, isolation and employer brutality most often reign. And that's without counting the double working day at work and at home which makes careers precarious...

As for the children of immigrants from colonization, in addition to the various phenomena of social reproduction, impoverishment and precariousness that affect the entire proletariat, they bear the brunt of the discrimination and penal injustices that are rampant in the popular neighborhoods and socially destroy the professional future of many. One thinks of the civic service type contracts most often devolved to young people from working-class neighborhoods who do not allow them to contribute to retirement. But also to uberization which pushes many without qualifications into the status of auto-entrepreneur, especially in the professions of delivery drivers. These "uberized" young people will thus be all the more affected by the reform, forced to work even more hours of service in order to be able to capitalize...

In the overseas territories, where employers' contributions are lower than in mainland France, inequalities and mass unemployment are increased tenfold, with a much higher cost of living and greater health problems, in particular with the scandal chlordecone: many will never see their retreats from French neo-colonialism. The injustice is all the greater since many metropolitan civil servants are sinking gilded pensions there thanks to over-remuneration to offset the cost of living, while the population is paying a high price!

Finally, we are of course thinking of undocumented workers who contribute to a pension to which they will not be entitled... After many years without rights and without statuses, people who are lucky enough to be regularized still find themselves with huge holes in their careers as they never stopped working and being overworked. In addition, the Darmanin bill on immigration plans to further restrict the rights of undocumented people and make them more precarious. The very restrictive criteria for residence permits for "sectors in tension" (such as catering or construction) will not reinforce the assignment of these workers to these environments where overexploitation is often the norm, under penalty of losing their right to stay. The impact of these two reforms combined on the career, the number of terms and the amount of pensions will be devastating.

Engaging in an anti-racist fight on the issue of pensions therefore requires going beyond simple reform and recalling the inequalities that already exist in order to denounce them. Precarious work and discrimination go together to subject non-white populations and working-class neighborhoods to overexploitation on the backs of employers.

Finally, the fight against discrimination and against racist discourse and violence must also be in order! We are fighting the latter also in the social movement and in the debate on pensions, where xenophobia, conspiracy, Islamophobia and anti-Semitism can sometimes be expressed, especially with an extreme right which tries to make its way to the front of the stage by promoting its false pronatalist solutions that make women and immigrants pay the price for employers' policies... We must also be vigilant in the face of racist police violence during and around these mobilizations. Let's not forget the case of Mantes-la-Jolie in 2018 during the yellow vests.

It is therefore an egalitarian, universal, socialized and denationalized right to retirement that must be demanded!

Retirement at age 60, without annuity conditions for all, without nationality conditions;
Taking into account the arduousness and choppy careers, essential both in feminized sectors and in racialized sectors which often overlap.
The withdrawal of Darmanin's asylum and immigration bill;
Regularization of all undocumented migrants ("documents for all or no more papers at all").
All on strike from March 7 and 8, but also in struggle on March 4 and 25 against the Darmanin Law!

Libertarian Communist Union, March 4, 2023

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