Who is Nicole Notat, the woman responsible for coordinating the “Ségur de la santé”?

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Portrait of Nicole Notat in charge of coordinating the Ségur plan? (here in 2016) – M.ASTAR / SIPA

The much awaited, “Ségur de la Santé” initiated by the Minister of Health Olivier Véran opens this Monday, May 24. The aim of this consultation, which will take place until mid-July, is to improve working conditions at the hospital, the remuneration of nursing staff and the care of patients.

Nicole Notat was charged with the delicate task of coordinating this “Ségur de la santé”. She promised to exercise this mission “while having at heart to organize the mutual listening and the dialogue between the whole of the stakeholders and to help in the construction of conclusions as shared as possible”. But who is she?

Controversial ex-CFDT leader

This 72-year-old Lorraine first worked as a teacher specializing in maladjusted children, before being elected in 1982 to the executive committee of the CFDT. Aged 35, she was the only woman in this governing body, which she took over 10 years later. This seizure of power did not take place without a stir, because it occurred a few months after the forced resignation of Jean Kaspar. Some activists will speak of a “coup”.

Energetic, precise, courteous, partisan of a German “partner” unionism – “complacent, supportive”, say her detractors, not hesitating to qualify her as “tsarina”, Nicole Notat does not unanimously the first years of his mandate, because it was considered insufficiently offensive.

“Talking to employers is not to clear customs”

The general secretary however maintains its course, approving a few months later the Juppé plan on the very controversial reform of social protection in 1995, which then triggers a social mobilization never seen since May 68. This support crystallizes internal criticism. Activists join or create SUD unions.

As part of the “Social Refoundation” (2000) launched by Medef, the CFDT becomes the privileged partner of the employers’ organization, signing all the agreements, much to the chagrin of the CGT or FO. “Talking to employers is in no way to clear customs,” said Nicole Notat in May 2002, at her last congress.

She votes “yes” to the European Constitution in 2005

After returning to office, the former leader, who admits to having suffered from sexism, founded Vigeo, an international social and environmental rating agency, notably carrying out audits on discrimination in companies and bought last year by Moody’s.

In addition to her functions within this agency, Nicole Notat remained very active. Calling to vote “yes” to the European Constitution in 2005, it participated in 2007, under the five-year term Sarkozy, in the evaluation committee of the Grenelle of the environment, and under that of Holland, in 2013, joined a think tank launched by the government to promote business in France.

Close to “progressive left ideas”

Between 2011 and 2013, she chaired the association “Le Siècle”, which brings together French political, economic, cultural and media leaders and whose objective is to bring together the “elites” to get to know each other beyond the cleavage left right. There too, it is a first for a woman in this association closed to the fairer sex until the 1980s.

In 2018, the executive appointed her government delegate to the International Labor Organization (ILO) to represent France, but backed off, due to “risks of potential interference” with her professional activity. Unattractive to politics but close to “progressive leftist ideas”, she was often approached for ministerial posts under different governments.


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