Demonstrations have been held across France in protest against President Nicolas Sarkozy’s plans to raise the retirement age from 60 to 62.
Marches attracted participants from a wide range of backgrounds: families, students and private sector workers.
One protester said he had “had enough of working”.
“I think retiring at 62 is too late for people like us who do long and irregular hours,” he said.
Socialist Party leader Martine Aubry, a vocal critic of the plan, attended one of the marches in Paris.
The government says that without reform, the country’s state pension fund faces a 50-billion-euro shortfall by 2020.
Socialist President Francois Mitterrand cut the retirement age from from 65 to 60 after the 1981 election.