Saturday 31 October 2009

National Exploitation Stadium

Work conditions are still bad at site of National Stadium. Today was small information event at construction site. During action appeared two locals who worked in Stadium and weren't paid. So they left the work. At same time, we saw Austrian workers at Stadium. They must have good salaries to come to work on site in Poland. So looks like subcontractors hire the local unemployed people without skills for part of work and don't care about paying them, but firm even spends money to import workers for some other jobs there.

Problem is lack of any organization on part of workers and actions of leaving work instead of organizing. ZSP tries to tell the local people not to let this happen, organize instead of becoming victims. There are more plans to talk to the workers as much as possible and gather more information on the issue.

Mainstream media became interested and TV made interviews with cheated workers but firm tries to convince media that everything is under control. State Labour Inspectorate came to Stadium, but they do not care about working conditions of people on contracts, since they are on civil contracts and aren't even "workers". Read more!

Sunday 25 October 2009

Shocking Work Conditions at the National Stadium

In Warsaw, construction work is going on at the site of the future National Stadium. On Oct. 23 it came to light that there are serious labour problems at the stadium.

The consortium building the stadium is like an octopus with many legs. Many different entities, each using a complicated chain of subcontractors. As it turns out, some work is done by people hired by a chain of 6-7 subcontractors. Each subcontractor waits for money to may its subcontractor, who in turn pays another one, etc. etc., until the money finally gets to the workers. Although there are different situations for different workers, some people take 3 months to get any money and some people on the site haven't been paid at all.

Read more!

Hunger Strike at PKP

On Friday Oct. 23, a hunger strike was begun in the PKP group.

(PKP is the Polish state railways, which is divided into many firms which play different functions.)

A representative of ZSP was invited to go in with the group of striking workers from Gliwice who came to Warsaw, to the headquarters of PKP. As it turned out, this was a group of women, which was unusual as railway workers action are usually male-dominated. There was a small discussion about the sense of hunger strikes and whether different action may be more sensible. The strike is continuing in Gliwice, although the woman did not stay in Warsaw over the weekend. They are due back on Monday.

Read more!

Anti-War Action

Nothing really to say about today's anti-war demo. Typical SWP Polish section. Nice pic by Narmi with balloons coming out of our comrade's head.

Campaign Against Militarism was there. There were leaflets. Also ZSP leaflets as well. Read more!

Thursday 22 October 2009

Antimilitarist Action

Yesterday, 21 October was antimilitarist action in Warsaw made by Campaign Against Militarism. Members of ZSP take part in this campaign.

Protest was due to visit of American Vice President Joe Biden in Warsaw to make deal about missiles and military base in Poland. Police tried to block protest and arrest member of ZSP but didn't manage. Members of ZSP are active in antimilitarist protests against war, military bases and NATO.

Full article about action is on CIA. Read more!

Saturday 17 October 2009

Stop Shell!

Some members of ZSP went to a protest organized by Amnesty International at a Shell station in Warsaw. Although AI writes about human rights abuses carried out by Shell on its webpages, the action unfortunately focused only on oil spills and the effects of ecological damage done by Shell in Nigeria. They did at least point out the human consequences of this.

On CIA web portal, we have been publishing different articles on the topic for years, from a more anti-capitalist point of view. We hope that the young people from the more liberal human rights scene will have a look and realize that the problem can not be cleaned up like an oil spill and that more "corporate responsibility" will not solve the problems of poverty. Read more!

Wednesday 14 October 2009

PKP Protest. ZSP Supports Radicals.

On Oct. 13 there was a protest of PKP workers and unions in front of their headquarters in Warsaw. More exactly, the protest was directed at PKP-PLK, one of the PKP Group companies. (See: this article.) PKP-PLK plans to liquidate some regional centers and fire people. Although they officially plan on firing only 500 people, actual job loss will be much greater because they will offer some employees a transfer to another city, knowing that they won't take it. This is often because of the unavailability of cheap housing in other cities. If these people refuse the jobs, it will not be treated as a dismissal or even liquidation of the position. In this situation, those who actually get fired are in a better situation, because at least they will get severance pay.

In the PKP group there is now a small group of radical workers who are critical of the way the unions are acting. Although by objective standards the PKP unions are far from being the worst sell-outs, there were complaints by both rank-and-file workers and unionists over how the situation in PKP Cargo was handled. One of the radical workers explained that although there are many union protests in relation to PKP and even a couple of warning strikes, the unions are reluctant to call for any other action, including a general railway strike. According to him, they are afraid that the company would use a strike as a way to gather public support against the workers. But the radical workers also have the feeling that when it comes down to it, some of the union leaders prefer to keep their cushy jobs and agree with the bosses rather than really fight for the workers.
Read more!

Sunday 11 October 2009

ZSP on the Bad Deal at LOT and the PR of the Unions

Workers at LOT Polish airlines are getting fucked over with restructuring. The unions claim that they have signed a deal which somehow is a small victory for the workers, but this is little more than PR. LOT announced last month that it wanted to reduce the workforce by 900 people. The unions, which organized a dodgy protest, attended by paid union officials and naive foreign guests from Unite and other unions (but with almost no LOT employees),  claimed it would "fight against job cuts" and held negotiations with the Board.

Although the unions announced a victory of sorts, noting that the agreement would lead to just over 400 job losses (440 to be exact), in reality, LOT plans to liquidate from 600-700 jobs over the next six months.

Read more!

Friday 9 October 2009

Antifascism at Edelman's Funeral

Today was the funeral of Marek Edelman. At the funeral was an antifascist placard in English and Polish reading "Make Antisemitism History. Enough Fascism and NeoNazism. No Pasaran 11.11 in Warsaw" with a black flag. The reference was to the fascist march planned for Nov. 11 in Warsaw which will be blocked.

Read more!

Tuesday 6 October 2009

PKP has to pay

Our comrade, fired from job just before retirement age, received a good compensation because he decided to fight. But he doesn't want to go back to the work. In another situation is hundreds of employees of PKP and companies like PKP Cargo, dependent on the PKP. PKP was divided in such a way to move the costs and profits and in the end, workers are fucked as usual.

Unions of PKP didn't make radical enough actions. Passengers are also very angry at practices of PKP but they don't participate to the actions against  PKP or for workers. Now is time to organize for the worker-passenger control! Read more!

Saturday 3 October 2009

Tenants Protest

Members of ZSP took part in the tenants protest in Warsaw during "International Day of Tenant"  2 October as part of Tenant Defence Committee blok. Tenants demand change to housing policy and protest against high costs of rent. ZSP points out how working people don't qualify to get public flats but many are not rich enough to rent flat or to buy. If they can get place to live, it is poor quality or very small. Housing problem divides people more into the classes of people who have and people who don't have. ZSP is against all that makes class divisions worse.

Read more!