France: Unions question lack of access to Olympic construction sites

A delegation of trade unions, including those from France, questioned their lack of access to major construction sites related to the 2024 Paris Olympics. The groups expressed their dismay after they were received on 6 December by the French company, Solideo at its project house in Saint-Denis.

Solideo is tasked to work on the construction and development operations of the 2024 Summer Olympics. It reportedly has a EUR 3.6 billion budget, of which, nearly EUR 1.55 billion are public funds. It is expected to complete 62 Olympic infrastructure projects within two years. 

"We have already conducted numerous construction site visits worldwide, especially those in Qatar leading to its hosting of the World Cup. And we have more visits planned ahead. Yet, here in Paris, we can’t do the same,” BWI General Secretary Ambet Yuson said. 

This was confirmed by CGT. "We do not know anything. We don’t know which company is working on this or that site,” lamented Jean-Pascal François, CGT-Construction Administrator.

CGT said that it wants to know if Solideo, which adopted a Social Charter in 2018, is actually implementing it on the ground. The Charter encourages employment and territorial development for the construction projects linked to the organisation of the Games. 

“We want to get a positive response to our request to visit the work sites and check if the charter is respected,” François said. 

For her part, BWI Communication Director Geneviève Kalina doubted the company’s claim that it has not hired any posted workers.  "They tell us that there are currently no posted workers, but we can’t really tell because they do not provide us any real figures," Kalina said.