Unemployment insurance: the government is finalizing its reform

Emmanuel Macron and the government kept their word. In accordance with the line they have been showing since the beginning of the summer, the new device, which tightens the rules for calculating unemployment benefit, will – except for a dramatic change – come into force on 1er October. A draft decree going in this direction was sent, Thursday, September 16, to the social partners. It takes up, almost word for word, the content of another decree, dated March 30, the application of which had been partially suspended by the Council of State, following an appeal by several unions, hostile to this reform. An umpteenth episode in this project started four years ago and that the executive is struggling to complete.

The incriminated measures relate to the daily reference wage (SJR). This parameter, which is used to determine the amount of compensation allocated to job seekers, will be set under new provisions because those that prevailed until now favor the use of short contracts to the detriment of longer contracts, according to the Minister of Labor, Elisabeth Borne. “In some cases, you can earn more by being unemployed than by working”, she argues in an interview with Parisian from Friday September 17.

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For employees chaining odd jobs and periods of inactivity, the amounts paid each month by unemployment insurance will now be lower, while being able to be allocated longer. The aim is to encourage the resumption of long-term employment but also to respond to the recruitment difficulties encountered by many companies. “May those who can work more do it!” “, throw Mme Terminal in the columns of the Parisian. Behind this clear statement, there is also the idea that until now, the compensation system locked some unemployed in poorly paid and precarious jobs.

“We are going to attack”

Provided for in a decree of March 30, these changes should have applied from 1er July but they had been contested by seven unions, including the CFDT, the CGT and FO, during a summary appeal before the Council of State. Without questioning “The principle of the reform itself”, the high court suspended, on June 22, the provisions relating to the SJR, because they affect individuals working in sectors where “Uncertainties” economies are strong – according to the formula used in a press release. In other words, the Council of State considered that the conditions were not met to establish mechanisms which are supposed “Promote job stability”.

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