Info Politis: Elected Communists want to make Paris a city with “zero deaths at work” by Pierre Jequier-Zalc

On March 18, 2022, Moussa Gassama cleans the windows of the social action center of the City of Paris (CASVP). He fell to his death. Two months later, Mr. Konaté died under a trench at a gas pipe repair site in Odéon (Paris). Samir Bey, he died at the end of June while repairing a car on the A4 motorway near the capital.

These names, these stories should not specifically speak to you. And for good reason, they are treated only sparingly – or in a diversionary way – by the local media. However, the details (which are not) of them accident at work show more character structural of the phenomenon. Those of poor and precarious working conditions that conflict with the safety of workers.

Moussa Gassama is a subcontractor to a company under the orders of a company commissioned by the social action center. Mr. Konaté is an undocumented worker, recruited by a temp agency as a temporary employee at a site subcontracted by GRDF to a private company. Samir Bey worked for his part for the City of Paris subcontractor in charge of bringing cars to the pound.

“No woman and no man should waste their life trying to earn it.”

According to the Communist and Citizen Group (GCC) of the City of Paris, this company has been convicted three times since 2020 for secret work and dismissal without real and serious reasons.

Apart from these three stories, the numbers speak for themselves. As revealed by Politicsan internal note from the labor inspectorate of Ile-de-France points out that there is at least 38 dead between January and Augustthe beginning of 2022 was the deadliest in the region in the past three years.

In the face of this observation, the Communist and Citizen Group (GCC) decided to face this problem by submitting a proposal for deliberation for the next Paris Council that will take place from November 15 to 18.

The stated purpose is clear: to set up “concrete steps” to make Paris “a model city in occupational safety and moving towards a territory without occupational death”can we read in the proposal for deliberation that Politics consulted. “Because no woman or man should lose their life trying to earn it”termination of elected officials.

Limit cascading outsourcing

To achieve this goal, the proposals proposed in the deliberation are ambitious and demanding. The main one, without a doubt, is the installation of systems to ensure that the public contracts of the City of Paris are carried out with the greatest possible safety for workers.

So, GCC suggests thatarrange subcontracting in cascade, this phenomenon in which the company inheriting the public market delegates all or part of the work to a company that itself subcontracts this work to another, and so on.

In each instance, the delegating company realizes a financial margin. Up to the end of the chain where the company that should really conduct the market is strangled and reduced to cutting costs on working conditions and the safety of its employees.

A worker at a construction site in Paris, in February 2022. (Photo: XOSE BOUZAS / HANS LUCAS / HANS LUCAS VIA AFP.)

To stop it cause of the accident acknowledged, the GCC proposes to limit subcontracting to two levels or to a maximum of 20% of the turnover of the company inheriting the public contract. “This idea, taken after discussions with trade unions, aims at subcontracting in Paris is a subcontracting of need and skill, not of cost”explained Barbara Gomes, Councilor of Paris and member of the GCC.

Prioritize good companies

Other proposed measures, the establishment of a “social law clause” WHO “offers the City the possibility to terminate the contract in case of violation of social law or criminal law” and that “Socially and ecologically sound companies are favored”.

In accordance with this idea, the communist group proposes that the City of Paris make a commitment “to no longer contract with companies convicted of non-compliance with labor laws within 5 years prior to the call for tenders”.

Also read > Workplace accidents: Île-de-France, at least 38 dead in 2022

In addition to these specific devices, broader measures were debated by the communist group. This is for example the case of strengthening controls “avoidance method deployed by companies in the Paris territory” with an increase in “human and financial resources are needed to strengthen prevention for workplace safety in Paris”.

Or that the City shows increased vigilance in the deadlines granted to companies to carry out construction sites and so onavoid hellish speed.

“The socialist and ecological majority cannot be insensitive to this text.”

Finally, to make visible the “social reality” occupational accidents and occupational diseases, elected Communists propose to create “an observatory of people who died at work” In the Paris region.

It will bring together various competent institutions trace information on the subject, whether those who intervened at the scene of the accident (rescue, police), labor inspection, health insurance, social partners, and researchers on the subject.

Does this ambitious text have any chance of being adopted by the Council of Paris? For that, it has to be voted by the socialist and ecologist majority, which, currently, has not been won. “There will be negotiations throughout the weekend”said Barbara Gomes.

Make Paris a pioneering city

For the councilor from Paris, this proposal is not “an exercise in radicalism to make radicalism”. He emphasized that the desire of the communist group is above all to make this deliberation “votable”, thus opening the way for dialogue and amendment to the majority.

Contacted Politics, the Deputy Mayor of Paris in charge of the file has not, at this stage, answered us. On the communist side, we want to be confident, “This text is intended to concretely improve people’s working conditions. The socialist and environmentalist majority cannot be insensitive to it”Barbara Gomes excuse.

He hopes, with this text, to make Paris a pioneer city on the subject, both for influence other French municipalities and, why not, rub national policy. Because until now, France, with more than two deaths per day at work, remains one of the worst country in Europe for that matter.

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