Parliament finally passed the bill on Thursday, November 17, which paves the way for unemployment insurance to be graduated in line with the economic situation, a prospect that bristles the left, the far right and the unions. The senators on Thursday afternoon approved a compromise found with the deputies on this text, which did not require the use of the constitutional weapon of 49.3 thanks to an agreement reached with the right wing.
Labor Minister Olivier Dussopt’s bill initially plans to extend current unemployment insurance rules, following a contentious reform of Macron’s first five-year term. A decree to this effect was issued in advance at the end of October. It also makes it possible by decree to modulate certain unemployment insurance rules so that this is the case “stricter when too many jobs are unfilled, more generous when unemployment is high”in line with Emmanuel Macron’s campaign promise.
There is consultation with the social partners, and the government will give notice “withheld arbitration” November 21 for an application of modulation at the beginning of 2023. “We are working on modulating the maximum duration[ale] of compensation », currently between twenty-four and thirty-six months depending on age, Mr Dussopt told MPs on Tuesday. Thereby “We do not plan to change the conditions for joining the unemployment insurance system”.
It requires six months of work over a twenty-four month reference period to unlock rights. The Executive Board considers it urgent due to the difficulties in recruiting companies and makes this reform a cornerstone of its strategy to achieve full employment by 2027, i.e. an unemployment rate of around 5% compared to 7.4% currently.
“We didn’t fold”
Deputies and senators reached a compromise on this text in a joint committee last week at the expense of a tightening imposed by the senators Les Républicains (LR), which the minister initially opposed. It was added that the rejection twice in one year of a permanent contract (CDI) after a fixed-term contract (CDD) or a temporary contract in the same position, in the same place and with the same remuneration would result in the loss of unemployment benefits. It will be up to the employer (or both employers) to inform the Pôle emploi, which constitutes a “technical difficulties” so it’s not one “Gas factory”judged Mr. Dussopt. “The government didn’t want it, but we didn’t bend”, welcomed Frédérique Puissat (LR), rapporteur for the text in the Senate. His counterpart in the assembly, Marc Ferracci (Renaissance), supports the measure “not very operational and legally fragile”and sees “a somewhat ideological approach, although there is a real issue of CDI’s rejection”.
Another provision, added by amendments from the President’s majority and LR deputies, is still being debated: “Abandonment of mail” will now be equated with a resignation, in order to limit access to unemployment insurance. Right-wing elected representatives “has been a source of proposals, both in the Assembly and in the Senate”insists Member of Parliament LR Stéphane Viry, who, however, believes that the bill “do not exhaust” the reforms to be implemented.
In unison with the trade unions, the left criticizes “right-wing reform” whose aim would be to “lower unemployment benefit”. Before the final vote on Tuesday in the Assembly, won by 210 votes to 140, the “rebels” defended in vain a final proposal to reject this text, which according to them gives “a disposable vision for employees”. The Socialists have announced a referral to the Constitutional Council. National Rally (RN) deputies also voted against the text, which according to them puts “punishment and guilt on the agenda”. The bill also provides for the opening of a hearing on the management of unemployment insurance and a “drastic simplification” validation of acquired experience (VAE), according to Minister Delegate, Carole Grandjean.