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The Union of Syndicalists (ZSP) will celebrate May Day this year with the residents of Warsaw's Praga district who have been protesting against rent increases and the reprivatization of public housing for the last few months.

Hyde Park with Tenants / Residents

Prior to the May Day demonstration there will be a series of small Hyde Parks - in backyards, parks and other public places. ZSP calls on residents to resist the rent increases with protests, direct action and a rent strike. Instead of housing run by irresponsible and corrupt bureaucrats, we call on people to organize themselves and repair their decaying homes with their rent money instead.


This week is the one year anniversary of the death of 20-year old Krysztof in the Vobro factory in Brodnica. There was a big cover-up of his death. Members of ZSP went to Brodnica to put up posters in memory of Krzystof, do some propaganda work and to deliver a certificate for "Worst Employer of the Year" to Vobro who was given that (dis)honour in the Worst Employer of the Year awards held by ZSP.

Unfortunately the trip ended up at the police station after ZSP members were attacked by Vobro goons.

(For info on the death of Krzystof, see:


ZSP Warsaw has set up a hotline for local residents to get advice on labour law, how to start a union, make protests, organize or file a claim. Members of the public may also use the labour law library at the Infoshop which has many books and articles with helpful advice.


From the Solidariteit webzine.
Polish temp worker fights back [1]

On the 12th of December 2008 Michal signed a contract with the temporary employment agency Groen Flex in the Polish city Opole. Groen Flex would send him to work with Eurocontract Zeeland in the Netherlands. The contract applied for a period 78 weeks and they told Michal he would work in glasshouses with vegetables. The contract, signed in both Poland and the Netherlands, guaranteed health insurance starting December 15th 2008. This ‘guarantee’ became the point of difference between Michal and his union on the one hand and Groen Flex on the other.


On March 12, ZSP members organized a picket at the events commemorating the anniversary of Poland's entry into NATO. These events, held at Warsaw University, included a "NATO village", a display of military hardware and the First Transatlantic Forum, attended by many international politicians.

There is a video interview with a member of ZSP in the main newspaper (in Polish):,34889,6377088,Protestowali_przeciw_NA...


Today about 25-30 people took part in the occupation of the office of Groen Flex work
agency in Opole, Poland. The activists, demanded to talk to the boss and would not leave until he appeared. In the meanwhile, the office was closed for business. The boss man later showed up but only wanted to speak in private with one person. People refused and instead the whole discussion was filmed by TV crews. The guy was claiming all sort of contractatory things but also said that as soon as they get the hospital bill they will pay it. But at the same time he was saying it didn't depend on him, but on the Eurocontract people in Holland since the Polish registered entity was not the employer, only the Dutch one.

Eventually people left but promised that they would be back with a larger group of people if the demands were not met.

On the same day, members of AGA (Anarchist Group of Amsterdam) visited the workers' hotel where Groen Flex employees live, the shipyards where the accident took place and the office of Groen Flex. These actions were extremely helpful in getting contacts with some people, including a witness and another person who has a case against Groen Flex. AGA also helped in many ways prior to this action, including getting the labour inspectors on this case. (PS - The company didn't tell the inspectors the truth, but surely the truth will come out.) Everybody thanks them for their help and solidarity.


Last month we were informed of the case of a Polish worker who had major troubles with his employer, a temporary work agency called EUROCONTRACT, and the Polish firm Groenflex. Michalek was sent to work in Holland by Groenflex a work agency in Opole in December. He was supposed to be picking vegetables and had a contract for 78 weeks.

The contract he signed in Poland was only a preliminary one; when in Holland he had to sign a different one, with the firm EUROCONTRACT. Instead of working picking vegetables, Michalek was sent to work in a shipyard, without any special training. In a few days, he was sent to clean chemicals without protective clothing. He lost consciousness and was rushed to the cardiology department of the hospital.

Instead of taking any care of their employee, EUROCONTRACT simply terminated the contract with Michalek. He returned home to Poland. Then he found out that he owed the hospital almost 3000 euros.


ZSP held a contest for the title of "Worst employer of year 2008." Any person could nominate the employer. Many people wrote and told of breaking the workers rights in their workplace. Last week ZSP announced the winner... or maybe we should say, the losers.

First place went to firm Vobro. Some workers from this chocolate factory made nomination, as well as members of family of Krzysztof Pruszewicz, who died in factory and readers of CIA. ZSP promises to deliver prize personally to boss.


The Lionbridge Case is apparently being used as an example case study in corporate training these days. It was interesting from the legal point of it.

It is also mentioned in ITUC's annual Report of Violation of Trade Union Rights. A copy of the report is available here:


Today was picket organized by ZSP at Nestle headquarters in Poland. The protest was in solidarity with Jacek Kotula, dismissed unionist from Alima-Gerber company, owned by Nestle Corporation. Kotula was illegally dismissed because of his fight for protecting rights in the Rzeszow baby food factory and because of his opinion that Nestle should buy fruit from local farmers at decent price. Kotula is fighting for return to his job. Monday is court case. Picketers went to Nestle corporation today as people were leaving work. There was talks about worker rights in Nestle, leaflets for employees. Police tried to stop a couple of people from going near the building but they moved too fast and once in front of building, they didn't want to make scene. Many guards locked doors of buildings and protected that only employees can go out, nobody in.

This is not first protest made against Nestle in Warsaw. They have bad record, the broke promises to some workers in other companies, they made big reductions to increase the profits and they don't tolerate the unionists who speak out. They made a big problems a few years ago at Goplana factory. We remember about Goplana, we know about the struggles of the workers and unions in Nestle in other countries.

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