Polish trade unions set to launch major protest against government

Poland’s three largest trade unions – Solidarity, the All-Poland Alliance of Trade Unions (OPZZ) and the Trade Unions’ Forum – will begin on Wednesday a four-day demonstration in Warsaw in protest against the government’s labor market policy, which may turn out to be the largest social protest in the country since 1989.

The three trade unions demand that the government withdraws from the Sejm, the lower house of parliament, the draft bill on a flexible working time. In their opinion the draft is scandalous and will not help increase employment. Unions oppose what they call “junk” employment contracts, temporary contracts suited to casual labor which limit employment rights, and want a higher minimum wage.

They also want more support for certain types of industry and changes to the healthcare system. They also protest against the increase of the retirement age to 67 for both sexes and want obligatory nationwide referendums on policies once 500,000 signatures have been collected.

Read the full story at The Warsaw Voice.

(Polish prime minister Donald Tusk. Photo: nato.int)