Strike by "stressed" gallery attendants allows free access to Louvre

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Monday, 12 February, 2007 to Friday, 16 February, 2007

A strike last week by attendant staff at the Louvre Museum in Paris resulted in the closure of several galleries and temporary free admission to the museum.

Gallery attendants in the Louvre are demanding a bonus payment to compensate for the stress of marshalling the crowds outside the Mona Lisa. The museum was visited by 8.3 million people last year, most of whom went to see Leonardo's masterpiece.

Strikers posted stickers bearing a picture of a gagged Mona Lisa and the words: "My caretakers have had enough. Give them their due - 150 euros!". Annie-Marie Andrzejczak, a union official, was quoted as saying, "We are thinking of putting up a notice with the Mona Lisa and the words "˜Donate €150 to my attendants or I'm going back to Italy". The protest also blocked the ticket booths in the museum, forcing security staff to let visitors in free for a period.

Strike temporarily allows free admission to Louvre -- CBC.CA

Louvre staff strike over stress -- BBC News

Mona Lisa becomes a picture of misery -- Times