They are forty, red chasuble of the CGT on the shoulders, gathered in front of the entrance of the “Docks of Paris” in Aubervilliers, Friday June 3. Inside the building, Carrefour’s general meeting of shareholders is held, in the presence of its CEO, Alexandre Bompard.
Jacques, one of the employees present, begins: “Inside, they’re going to split 400 million in profits. We want a better distribution of wealth and we want more means to work. It is the grassroots people who produce the wealth. Those who are up there share the millions.”
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Accompanied by the CFDT, the CGT challenged the management concerning their remuneration in a context of high inflation in France. “They give everything to the shareholders and to us, they give us almost nothing, we only have pennies“, protests Adelia. We are worse than underpaid and we have atrocious working conditions. There, they are saving money on staff.”
“When you see what the CEO earns and all he gives to shareholders, there is really something to be upset about.”Adelia, Carrefour employee
This is where the shoe pinches: wages have been caught up by inflation to the point of finding themselves today below the minimum wage, explains Philippe Allard, the CGT group delegate: “With inflation at more than 5.2% in one year, the majority of Carrefour employees have been paid below the minimum wage since May 1, 2022. We knew from the start that the dice were loaded and that inflation would catch up with wage increases. It is a real scandal that Carrefour, the first private employer in France, pays its employees below the minimum wage.“
“Not at all half of Carrefour employees are under the hourly minimum wage, it would be against the law and against the history built by the Carrefour group“, replied Alexandre Bompard.
The next salary negotiations will not take place until the fall. By then, CEO Alexandre Bompard will have earned 7 million euros in 2021. A difficult sum to imagine. In front of the demonstrators, Philippe Allard attempted this image: “An employee must work 300 years to receive one year’s salary from Bompard“.
The small shareholders who came physically to the general meeting did not seem so receptive to these arguments.
Carrefour employees demonstrate during the general meeting of shareholders: the report by Guillaume Gaven