France: Hospital Workers Say, “Medals for Our Service? No, Thank You!”

This post is translated from French from:

For months, hospital staff in France have been fighting for better pay. Then, during the crisis, they were sent to the front without ammunition: a lack of PPE (personal protective equipment)! And now, to reward them, the government is about to give them… a medal! And no, it’s not fake news!

Caregivers consider this medal an insult and a provocation. A spokesperson summed up the general opinion as follows: “More than a year of mobilizations, an unprecedented strike movement, 1,200 department heads resign… and the government response: one worthless medal.”

On top of this, the government is planning to stage a parade on the Champs Elysées in Paris on July 14, Bastille Day, the annual patriotic holiday. Caregivers say: “July 14 is a military parade. What are we going to do? March wearing the garbage bags that we were forced to wear in the hospitals and clinics because we didn’t have protection, and they weren’t able to give us any?” Caregivers don’t want the bosses and politicians to call them “heroes,” and they don’t want medals or parades, just pay raises and decent working conditions. Period.

Featured image credit: Reuters