Workers Strike at the Louvre
Closing its famous doors and consequently leaving a mass of tourists outside amid its famous glass pyramids. The Louvre shut down due to workers strike. The Paris museum’s security and reception, protesting “unprecedented deterioration of conditions” amid record crowds.
The museum, attracted a record 10.2 million visitors last year, a figure that is on the steady incline. An increase of over 20% from the year before. “No other museum in the world has ever equaled this figure,” the museum trumpeted in January.
Unfortunately, the strain of the museums fame is not unique to staff members. Workers say both visitors and staff are suffering from such massive popularity.
According to the Sud Culture Solidaires Union “The Louvre is suffocating,”. “While the public has increased by more than 20% since 2009, the palace has not grown. … Today the situation is untenable.”
According to the union, staff members at the Louvre declined from 2,161, to 2,005 in a 9 year span.
Shocked and disappointed American visitors tweeted their experiences to the museums unusual closing. “Well this is great,” tweeted one Californian. “Glad I got to the Louvre early.”
In an attempt to mollify the public the museum is offering refunds for tickets purchased for the day.
Overcrowding and Online Sales
Citing several problems, the Sud Culture Solidaires Union, states the bulk of the problem is due to the overcrowding conditions. Amplified by an aggressive and impatient public, jostling crowds and inadequate emergency evacuation measures.
“What to say about visiting conditions when people are confronted with noise, trampling, crowds, extreme fatigue and the total inadequacy of museum facilities at such a high volume of visitors?” the union said in the statement. “The Louvre does not have the means of its ambitions.”
Closing its doors as is customary on Tuesday the museum saw the opportunity to forewarn the public. Following the workers strike, the museum website issued a notice stating the Louvre would open again late on Wednesday; after “a general meeting attended by members of the Musée du Louvre’s Reception and Security staff.” Warning that a large number of visitors were expected in the coming days recommending they buy tickets online.
A Louvre employee and union representative, Pierre Zinenberg, told the Associated Press that the outcome of Wednesday’s meeting would determine whether the museum would re-open that day, or whether the strike would continue.