Sunday 28 February 2010

Warsaw: Picket at Greenway

27 February ZSP held a picket in front of the busiest Green Way restaurant in Warsaw as part of boycott called against the restaurant. First people gave information about workers' rights and organization and about the problems in Greenway that led to the boycott. Then there was a picket outside this busy restaurant. The manager was upset about it and called to the director of the company to explain that their was a protest there. Although he claimed that there were no violations in his bar, it later turned out that workers there, as probably in most Green Way restaurants, are also not given statutory overtime payments.
The director of the company explained that unpaid work should not happen again in Green Way, but there is no information about how this is going to be stopped or about when people will receive their money for the time they worked for free. In addition, he claimed that the problem in Wroclaw was resolved, although we know that people haven't been paid.

We told the manager that the firm should aim to guarantee compliance with the labour law and good working conditions at the restaurants and that we will continue to make pressure on them until we know that things have really changed.

We also encouraged workers to organize themselves throughout the chain. There is already some interest, but such campaigns have not existed in this sector until now. Criticism about precarious work conditions and McJobs are not well known, the traditional labour movement does not really deal with this and there is no history of workers' self organization in these types of jobs. Still, this Green Way case has already brought the issue of unpaid trial periods to thousands of people who might not have known about it otherwise.

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