Some time ago the Polish tenants’ movement, concentrated mainly in the Polish capital, Warsaw, managed, after years of hard political struggle, to pass a bill prohibiting the seizure of properties, mainly older tenements, together with their tenants. On 11th of August, however, another bill was to be voted on, which, as one of the leaders of the tenant movement says in an interview with the Strajk.eu portal:
„Concerns the discontinuation of reprivatisation proceedings that are still ongoing and therefore 'hanging’ over the tenants. This is because many reprivatisation proceedings are currently suspended. Then the city refuses to carry out repairs in tenement houses, the buildings start falling apart, and the tenants are evicted. This creates a chance for the town hall to finish the reprivatisation. So, even though the previous law, forbidding to reprivatise buildings that are inhabitated, meant a lot, the communal resources continue to deteriorate, people lose their homes, they are not sure about their future. And they still won’t have it if the amendments that the Senate has introduced are accepted.”
After much machinations and long uncertainty, resulting from the chaos that took place in the Polish Parliament on 11th of August, these amendments were passed, simultaneously ending the non-human reprivatisation.
At Paroc Polska’s stone wool insulation plant, workers walked off their machines on 5th of August. This is a general strike – previous attempts to negotiate with management over employment conditions and wages have failed. Paroc Polska operates in Trzemeszno, a town of eight thousand people in Wielkopolska. It employs 780 people, in three shifts, and not only did not suffer losses in the pandemic but even increased its workforce. However, workers did not feel that this good fortune translated into benefits for the company.
„Nearly one in five of the 800 employees at Paroc Polska work on a junk, term contract. After 40 years of work, the seniority bonus is PLN 160 gross. If you want to earn a decent monthly wage, you need to work overtime. The 40-hour working week is a farce” – Grzegorz Ilnicki wrote on Facebook, a lawyer and trade union activist who has been advising the Paroc Polska crew for three years and then supported the workers during the protest.
After a week of strike, all workers’ demands were accepted by the company management.
Employees of Paroc Polska will expect a salary adjustment of at least PLN 850, spread over three years (this year and the next two years). The management has also pledged that it will no longer offer employees who have worked at the company for 12 months successive fixed-term contracts (nor will it dismiss such people in order to employ others on three temporary contracts permitted by law). After passing the operator’s exam, the employee will receive an open-ended contract.
What is more, Paroc Polska had to meet the most important demand of the crew – it will better reward experienced employees who have been working with the company for at least several years. The highest seniority allowance will amount to 18 percent of the minimum wage every month and will be subject to annual valorisation.
On Tuesday after 6pm, government spokesman Piotr Mueller announced that Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki had dismissed Gowin as deputy prime minister and minister of development, labour and technology. On Wednesday morning, Covenant’s national board decided to leave the United Right club and set up its own parliamentary group. This calls into question the fate of the government majority in the Polish Sejm.
The District Prosecutor’s Office in Lubin will investigate the death of 34-year-old Bartosz from Lubin. He will assess whether there has been any manslaughter and abuse of powers by the police. Yesterday, in front of the headquarters in Lubin, there was a protest against the brutality of the officers. During the intervention, the man called for help, tried to get away, screamed. Eventually he passed out. But in the video that appeared on August 6 on the Internet, you can see that even before, when he was led to the police car, he was clearly struggling to stay on his feet.
On Sunday, August 8th, there were violent protests in front of the headquarters in Lubin. Bricks, stones, bottles, but also Molotov cocktails were flying towards the police building. The participants of the riots did not want to allow the firefighters to enter the building on fire, they blocked the passage of the ambulance which was to help the injured policeman.
Co by było, gdyby praca oznaczała zabawę, a ciężka praca nie oznaczała prawie w ogóle prac…