Thousands of protesters have taken to streets across France as teachers and civil servants staged a 24-hour walkout, joining striking transport and energy workers.
The spreading industrial action is shaping up to be the biggest show of defiance to President Nicolas Sarkozy's reform plans since his election in May.
Hospital staff, postal workers and air traffic controllers also joined Tuesday's stoppage in protest at planned job cuts and in support of more pay.
The latest show of people power left many schools shut, hospitals only able to provide a reduced service and airports hit by delays and cancellations.
And an open-ended strike by transport workers entered its seventh day, slashing national rail services.
Commuters on the Paris metro, where one in three trains were running on Tuesday, had to be corralled to prevent platform overcrowding.
State rail operator SNCF said there were fewer strikers than last week but the impact on services still triggered massive rush hour traffic jams on roads into the capital.
Other commuters opted to skate, cycle or walk to the office.
The civil servants' strike even spread to the French-run Indian Ocean island of Reunion, where this man wore an anti-President Nicolas Sarkozy T-shirt.