Henri Simon's account of the successful strike wave which swept Poland in the summer of 1980 when the government raised the price of meat.
A NEW WORLD: FROM MEAT PRICES TO DIRECT DEMOCRACY
July 1980: Spontaneous Strikes Run Rampant Everywhere 1
Truck drivers plan to occupy the Polish HQ of the firm until fired union members are reinstated.
About 20 drivers from Schavemaker Transport occupied the firm's Polish headquarters in Katy Wroclawskie yesterday. They are determined to stay there until their colleagues, dismissed in a union-busting campaign, are reinstated. The action comes after drivers protesting in Holland and another Polish city were beaten by security goons hired by the company.
Social and political situation in Lodz at the beginning of XX century:
At the beginning of XX century Lodz was a dynamically developing centre of the cotton and woollen industry. The favourable location of the city and its developing industrial infrastructure caused a rapid migration of the workers in search of the employment in its factories. At the same time, very low salaries and the lack of social security institutions caused the numerous unrests, until the year of 1906 and the general strike with so called “Lodz’s lockout” that follow.
The troubles begun in November 1906, when the management of Poznanski’s cotton factory decided to fire 96 workers, that they believed to be the leaders of the conflict and unrest within the factory.
200 workers recently dismissed from Thomson in a Warsaw suburb occupy factory in the hopes of getting promised compensation.
Thomson factory in the Warsaw suburb of Piaseczno produces TV glass (screens and tubes). A few years ago, the Indian firm Videocon purchased all of Thomson's TV glass factories. Videocon planned to restructure the company and introduce LCD production in Piaseczno.
A short history of the 1970-71 uprising by workers in Poland which saw strikes and occupations at workplaces across the country. Although suffering savage repression, the uprising forced the government to back down over plans to increase prices of basic consumer goods.
On the morning of December 14 1970, thousands of workers from the Gdansk shipyards downed tools and began marching into the city. Their objective was the local regional office of the Polish United Workers' Party (PZPR), the party that had ruled the People's Republic of Poland since 1952. The protestors were met by police units and fighting between the two sides lasted into the evening.
Factory puts profit over safety.
In May 2008, Krzysztof Pruszewicz would have been 21. He was killed on April 16 in an industrial accident in the Vobro Chocolate Factory in Brodnica, Poland.
In December 2007, a trade-union called “Krajowa Federacja Pracownikow (KFP)” (Worker’s Federation) was formed in Lionbridge Poland, a subsidiary of Lionbridge Technologies, a US-based multinational with subsidiaries all over the world.
Lionbridge specializes in translations and adapting products to local markets (so called “globalization services”). Lionbridge is one of many US-based companies which move jobs from the US to countries with lower wages and working standards.
Currently there are many labour conflicts in Poland, including various forms of strikes and protest. Almost 20 years after Poland's transition to a market economy, labour unrest is still strongest in the budget sector and in state-owned companies.
THE STRIKE IN BUDRYK: Miners get the shaft as elite get wealthy
The mining industry in Poland is still a quite healthy business. Fuel prices are rising as is the global demand for coal. Budryk is one of the mines in Poland that was making a very healthy profit – until a labour dispute began costing the mine losses of about 1 million US dollars per day.
Capitalist greed leads corporation to cut labour costs to the bone. Will workers and consumers fight back, asks Laure Akai?
The Cadbury Company plans to shut down its Keynsham plant, which would result in 500 lost jobs. Another 200 jobs will be cut in Bournville. These jobs are to be transferred to Poland by 2010. (The company plans to start additional chocolate production in Poland in 2008. It has also signed a deal with Barry Callebaut in Poland to outsource some production.