Everyone knows it and, basically, everyone is aware of it, pension reform is no longer an option, it is the only solution that allows the pay-as-you-go system to be preserved. This beautiful French social exception! Those who think they are working in solidarity today by opposing it are in reality showing individualism for tomorrow, by postponing the necessary reform to future generations.
The question of age focuses attention and tension, since it leads each Frenchman to make a count that takes him a little further from the date of the expected retirement, which at best questions, at worst despairs. This question of retirement age, far from being the alpha and omega of the debate, must on the contrary become the beginning of a reflection on the meaning of work in our society and the place we reserve for it.
The question should no longer be to know at what age we will retire, but rather to be in good physical and mental health to take full advantage of this slice of life! From then on, it will no longer be a deliverance but a new stage.
Our conception of work must be revisited, we still live with the vision of the last century, we can no longer reason “productivity” as in the time of the postwar boom. New expectations of work reflect changes in our society: new professions, four-day week, multiple careers, right to disconnect, equal pay, search for meaning, difficulty of employment for seniors, specificities of female careers, lack of consideration of young people, taking into account hardship, fairer remuneration…
This project around “the value of work” which I prefer to the “value of work”, is the hope that we can give to current and future generations. My parents’ generation considered effort, sacrifice, hierarchical progression and the number of hours spent in the office to be the main criteria for a successful life. That of my daughter, who is about to enter working life after the traumatic episode of Covid, favors the notions of well-being at work, balance between family life and professional life and flexibility.
Are my parents now wrong? Is my daughter right before the others? What if, rather than replaying the endless sterile struggle of the ancients against the moderns, we calmly put these questions on the table in a dispassionate way? What if, for once in our country, we address these essential questions that shape our lives without being in confrontation, but in the search for solutions for the future?
Let’s open this great debate throughout the territory as soon as the necessary reform in progress is adopted, it is the only way to overcome the cyclical divisions and to reach these consensuses of which our country sometimes has the secret: let’s bring together all the living forces: bodies intermediaries, companies, employees, economists, sociologists, citizens, key witnesses…
We will only be able to do this if we guarantee the financial balance of our pension system. This is why I support government reform, because it is the starting point for this new reflection that I call for: the collective construction of the world of work in the 21st century!
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