Transport and public services in France are expected to be disrupted as unions demonstrate against proposals to raise the retirement age from 62 to 64.
On Tuesday, the majority of train and metro services are canceled, and many schools will be closed.
Since mid-January, there have been six days of strikes and demonstrations, and unions predict this one will be the biggest yet.
At protests in Paris and other cities, over a million people are anticipated.
One union leader claimed that there is discussion of escalation and “bringing the country to its knees” because the administration is not showing any signs of reversing course on its pension proposal.
There will be requests to prolong the strikes in crucial industries including gas terminals and electricity generation in the coming days.
Despite the clamor and occasional disruption, the campaign has so far not significantly hurt the economy, and the law is still making its way through parliament.
Unions and the left are increasing the pressure now because they are aware that there is a limited amount of time remaining until the change is a fait accompli.
According to a survey by the French research firm Elabe, the majority of French people support the current strikes taking place in opposition to President Emmanuel Macron’s pension reform.
The poll indicates that 56% of respondents support rolling strikes and 59% support the call for a nationwide strike.
According to the study, two-thirds of respondents support the broader protest movement against the government’s proposed pension reforms.
The reform has been deemed “necessary” by President Macron due to deficits projected for the French pension system over the next 25 years, per research by the independent Pensions Advisory Council.
We don’t want the French people to be, quote, unquote, “victims” of a protracted blockade, said government spokesman Olivier Véran to France 2.
The strikes might result in a “ecological, agricultural, and health catastrophe,” he warned last week.
On Tuesday, more than 260 protests are anticipated around France, with up to 1.4 million people likely to participate, a police source told the AFP news agency.
In order to reflect greater life expectancies, neighboring European economies have already raised the retirement age to 65 or higher.