Renzi compares Italy job reform critics to 'grumpy pensioners'

People stand in Rome's San Giovanni square on October 25, 2014 during a protest against Prime Minister Matteo Renzi's plans to overhaul the Italian labour marketItalian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi defended his job reform plans on Sunday, comparing naysayers to grumpy pensioners, a day after a mass protest in Rome against the measures. “When a construction site opens there’s immediately a convention of pensioners who gather around the sides and say, shaking their heads: ‘That’s not the way to do it’,” Renzi told a meeting with business leaders and members of the public in Florence. Renzi’s comments followed a Rome rally which drew hundreds of thousands of protesters from across Italy — up to one million according to organisers — amid increasing resistance to his plans to boost growth and tackle unemployment. Saturday’s protest, called by Italy’s largest trade union, mainly focused on Article 18 — a law which protects those who are unfairly dismissed.

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