a demonstration in Saint-Etienne in support of the group’s employees

According to the prefecture, more than 2,000 people – employees, subcontractors, elected officials and residents of the region – demonstrated on Sunday December 17 in Saint-Etienne, at the call of the Casino inter-union, to defend jobs and say their attachment to the emblematic brand of their city, in great financial difficulty.

The procession, first gathered near the imposing headquarters of Casino, a long glass liner located opposite the TGV station, set off at the end of the morning towards the Loire prefecture, for a one-hour march, at the call of the inter-union FO, CGT, CFDT, UNSA and CFE-CGC.

“We live by and for Casino. It could be a disaster”fears Thierry Renaud, forty-year-old boss of a printing company that has been 80% dependent on the mass distribution group for more than three decades. “Everything has stopped, we no longer have any orders”he notes, while the city has been experiencing a slow economic hemorrhage for forty years.

Read also: Article reserved for our subscribers Casino: a rapid dismantling

“Big impact” on surrounding communities

The unions had called for mobilization of Casino employees, subcontractors, “the population attached to the brand” And “the players and supporters of AS Saint-Etienne”. The football club, which was called the“Casino Sports Association” today plays in Ligue 2, far from the glory years of the Greens. The Geoffreoy-Guichard stadium is named after the founder of Casino.

“Today, we are expecting politicians, athletes, ordinary people, from the Saint-Etienne region and beyond”affirmed the CGT union delegate and spokesperson for the inter-union, Jean Pastor, Sunday morning on RMC.

Many local elected officials joined the parade. “Many employees residing in the Forez plain (located in the heart of the department)we do not yet measure the big impact that this will have on our communities”lamented the deputy of the neighboring village of Saint-Cyprien.

For months, the company’s unions have been trying to mobilize in order to avoid “a new Manufrance”. The liquidation of the mail order company in 1985 – almost a hundred years after its creation – left a bitter memory locally, as did, a decade later, the closure by the State of its military arms manufacturing.

Read also: Article reserved for our subscribers The prospect of Casino being dismantled shakes employees

The World with AFP