Laborers at some of Louis Vuitton’s brand-owned workshops in France staged a strike on Wednesday morning, demanding wage increases. Union sources told the Agence France-Presse (as reported by WWD) that the hour-long protest - the first of its kind in 15 years - calls on Louis Vuitton to honor a "worthy" wage increase, and comes just a day ahead of the conclusion of the Paris-based brand’s annual salary negotiations period.
Per the Agence France-Presse, the workers are fighting Louis Vuitton’s offer of a gross raise of 30 euros, or $31.95 at current exchange, for every employee and individual increases of between 10 euros and 20 euros, or $10.65 and $21.30, for 80 percent of the workers.
The AFP further reports that according to two of the French workers unions - the Force Ouvrière and the Confédération française démocratique du travail - 30 percent of the employees were mobilized at factories in Issoudun and Condé (Indre), more than 50 percent in Asnières (Hauts-de-Seine) and between 25 and 50 percent in workshops located in Ardèche and Drome. A spokesman for Louis Vuitton, on the other hand, stated that "less than 10% of the leather goods workers" were involved and only "three workshops out of twelve" were home to protests.
"Calling for a walkout at Vuitton is difficult, people are afraid of being seen badly, but today a good part of the employees have mobilized to show their dissatisfaction," said a representative for the Force Ouvrière union.