Belgium’s French speaking rail unions have called for a strike from Wednesday to Thursday in protest against the government’s demands that the railway cut costs and workers’ off days.
The public transport union CSC Transcom and the railroad workers’ union CGSP Cheminots confirmed Monday that they would go ahead with the planned strikes while Dutch speaking unions decided to negotiate with the Belgian government.
The government says it wants to step up “productivity” among rail workers, by enforcing them to work one hour more each week, but unions say working conditions would deteriorate.
The national railway company SNCB warned commuters not to rely on trains when they’re travelling between Tuesday night and Thursday late evening. Railroads mostly in the French speaking Wallonia are expected to be shut down.
Last year, Belgium was paralyzed in a series of strikes, including a national one that hit public transportation, government offices, schools and private businesses.