A Report on the Organization of an IWW Branch in Amiens, France

Conducting most of its campaigns in student circles, the union now welcomes young workers into its ranks. For the time being, the union was mainly involved in student struggles, but it was active and left its mark on the Amiens trade union scene.

A Report on the Organization of an IWW Branch in Amiens, France
Poster made by the IWW Amiens Branch for International Women's Day

This brief report from a new Industrial Workers of the World (IWW) union branch in France offers a glimpse into how students are organizing as workers in the growing revolutionary labor movement.


We hope this series of reports and messages exchanged with the recently organized IWW union branch in Amiens (Northern France) is an inspiration to student militants looking for ways to intervene in the labor movement.

The Struggle in Amiens: outreach to workers, collaboration against the immigration law, solidarity with Palestine, participation in the IWW Organizer Training 101.

Conducting most of its campaigns in student circles, the union now welcomes young workers into its ranks. For the time being, the union was mainly involved in student struggles, but it was active and left its mark on the Amiens trade union scene. Its first involvement in the struggle was within an intersyndicale of student struggles. Hand in hand with the FSE, Solidaires étudiants and the CNT, we were able to start working together on the subject of the immigration law, an abject law drafted by the Prime Minister, Gérald Darmanin, which will have a major impact on our foreign comrades who have come to study in France. This law will put an end to aid for our foreign students. We are also fighting to the full in support of Palestine, which has been facing mass colonisation by Israel for over 70 years, particularly since 7 October. We call for a boycott, and join in all actions to denounce our government, which cowardly supports Israel and the Tsahal armies. Committees to read Palestinian texts are held fairly regularly in our faculty to raise awareness of this issue among our fellow students.

In November, the OT101 training given by comrades from the Brussels branch of the IWW brought together many people from all over France and gave us a better structure and the means to react appropriately through direct action in our struggles. We were delighted to welcome our comrades to our small town for a lively exchange of ideas and learning, which augurs well for future support between our branches.

With around ten affiliates at present, the IWW branch is slowly working towards making itself better known through training, and events in which it participates, such as the recent TDoR event or the OT101 training course open to all. It’s by focusing on direct action and solidarity between us that we’ll be able to grow and then give workers the weapons to tip the balance in their favour.

Collage agitprop from the branch

Dispatch from January 30

A quick word on the current situation in France:

Farmers have been mobilising for a week now. There are 3 major bodies mobilising to lead the farmers’ anger: the FNSEA (a union that’s pretty close to the party in power as well as to the big agri-food companies, pro-glyphosate and big farms), the Young Farmers’ Union, which is of the same ilk, and at its head we find someone who’s part of the party currently in power: Renaissance. There is a third organisation, the Confédération Paysanne, which fights for the smallest farmers, market gardeners and fishmongers. For our part, we join forces with the Confédération Paysanne, which presents anti-capitalist ideas. We’re going to meet them tomorrow on the outskirts of Amiens. Numerous blockades (including the one in Paris) are currently underway, and the lorry drivers have also joined the struggle. Their demands, which explain their anger, are: more resources for farmers, including the abolition of taxes on fuel and a fairer share of what they sell on the international market.

This Thursday 1 February, a national strike is being organised in the education sector to fight against the SNU (Service National Universel), which is a form of new military service, but also to demand pay rises, more staff, and against the return of uniforms in secondary schools.

For our part, we’re trying to mobilise students, which is no easy task given the small number of students who are sensitive to political issues in our country. Everything lies in the Amiens student committee that we set up at the beginning of the year and which is just starting to grow. We’re trying to bring about a convergence of struggles, but it seems that the biggest unions (across all industries and trades) are dragging their feet about joining the fight for a general pay rise.

Preparation for International Women’s Day

Origins and Initial Correspondence from 2023

As of today, most of our members are university students, some of us have side jobs in order to pay rent/food.

At the moment, our “main base” is our local university and the others ones around. It is quite important because last year we were able to raise the awareness of our fellow students/workers on their unfair working conditions, as there was a national political crisis about the pension refrom (to be quick, the government raised the age at which you can retire from 62 to 64 years, which caused a national protest movement that went on for months). During this time, we were able to “occupy” our university by temporarily abolishing the obligation of going to classes, which gave us time to organise actions, conferences, meetings, film projections, and to speak more freely with our professors and other workers in order to learn more about their working conditions.

Unfortunately, we were shut down by the university’s direction, and the social movement died out slowly. However, there is still hope, this next semester we will try again, we’ll come back stronger, more prepared!

We are delighted to be a part of the IWW, and we hope to help workers organise and lead actions in order to get fair rights.

If you wish to contact us, feel free to send us an email at the following address: iwwamiens@proton.me

Join our Discord Community