May 1 protesters back in the streets after two special years

Thousands of demonstrators in the streets of Lyon, despite the rain and many young people made the trip for this 2021 version of Labor Day.

2021, a May 1st like we had not seen in Lyon for two years. The procession of demonstrators marched to warn about the economic situation of the country, the precariousness linked to the health crisis and the reform of unemployment insurance.

From memory of Lyonnais, this image contrasts with 2020, obviously. The country was then in full confinement, unthinkable that year, to participate in the traditional demonstration of workers. A year earlier, in 2019, the rallies were tinged with yellow to the color of the vests movement that then shook the country.

Many young people in the procession

Many young people in the procession of May 1, 2021

© M.Aïssou

The 2021 parade took place in a more classic way except that young people are particularly represented there. This is perhaps the specificity of this year. Feminists, support for undocumented migrants, pacifists, thousands of activists responded to the call and marched alongside the unions.

The protesters intend to alert the government to the precariousness of workers in many areas following the COVID health crisis. An economic weakening, to which are added fears linked to the reform of unemployment insurance.

Multiple police charges

On several occasions, the police charged on the demonstrators. Many testimonies relate a certain incomprehension within the procession.

5 people arrested

According to the police, it was a question of dispersing hostile groups and fights between demonstrators with opposing ideologies. The prefecture speaks of about 250 black-blocks at the head of the procession that the agents wanted to disperse from the start of the demonstration. Several interventions were necessary to maintain order, judged the authorities, who deplore 27 police officers and gendarmes slightly injured. On the side of the demonstrators, one person was injured according to the Rhône Prefecture.

5 individuals were arrested for throwing projectiles. The event ended at the end of the morning at Place Bellecour, in a festive atmosphere and under the required umbrellas.

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