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(en) Warsaw Commissions OZZ Workers' Initiative against racism and fascism

Date Fri, 22 Mar 2019 08:47:00 +0200

Warsaw Environmental Commission during the "Refugees welcome" demonstration ---- About 2 million immigrants and immigrants currently work in Poland. Most of them come from Ukraine, but there are also many people from countries such as Belarus, Moldova, Nepal, India and Bangladesh. Most often, they are employed in the construction industry, logistics, services and in agriculture. These people often work without contracts ("in black"), receive wages below the minimum wage or are forced to sign civil law contracts; they are also often hired through temporary employment agencies - employers try to stop the pressure on wage increases, thus gaining a cheap labor force that can be easily disposed of during a downturn.

Immigrants and immigrants have long been a part of the Polish labor market - they are our colleagues, co-workers and co-workers who have and have the same problems as us. The only thing that makes us different is their daily struggle with violence resulting from racist and xenophobic prejudices. Immigrants and immigrants are more and more victims of xenophobic attacks - data of the National Prosecutor's Office[LINK]indicate that in recent years the number of proceedings regarding "hate crimes" (i.e. motivated by racial, xenophobic and anti-Semitic biases) has doubled: from 835 in 2013 to 1 632 in 2016. Only here are cases, which have been reported and in which the police and prosecutors have initiated proceedings - the number of actual attacks and acts of violence is unknown, only assuming that it is much higher than official statistics (according to data collected by the Office for Equal Treatment of Ombudsman, as many as 92% of victims of discrimination does not report the violence experienced).

The rise of racist sentiments is a fact not only at the level of police statistics. It is also testified by the ever more insolent actions of organizations referring to nationalist or fascist ideas - the National Radical Camp, All-Polish Youth and informal groups of "Autonomous Nationalists". These organizations try to redirect immigrants and immigrants to social dissatisfaction related to low wages, overstated working hours or underfunding public services.

As a trade union, we have a duty to oppose both racism and all fascist movements. For this reason, we support the demonstration "Pretty Racism and Fascism," which on Saturday, March 16, at 12:00 will depart from under the Copernicus Monument in Krakowskie Przedmiescie. We encourage all members and members of the Warsaw OZZ Employee Initiative to join the demonstration and to jointly express opposition to racism and fascism.

[see event on Facebook]

Below are the positions and statements of several Warsaw IPC commissions that support the Saturday demonstration.

Plant Commission at Danfoss Poland Sp. z oo:

In the Danfoss factory in Tuchomie (Pomeranian province), employees from Ukraine are employed for six months every year. In the period of increased number of orders, the Company employs even several dozen employees from Ukraine - it is mediated by a temporary work agency. As a trade union, we fight to improve their working conditions and encourage them to join the union - that there will be no unhealthy competition and reluctance between Poles and Ukrainians on whom we all lose. Participation in the demonstration on March 16, expressing opposition to racism and fascism is a symbolic gesture for us - showing that the trade union is an organization for all employees and workers, regardless of their nationality.

Works Commission at the University of Warsaw:

The OZZ Factory Committee of the Workers' Initiative at the University of Warsaw fully supports the demonstration under the slogan "Pretty Racism and Fascism!"

Why do we think it is important? As academics and academics, we know how serious the problem of fascism of social life can be and the consequences of hate speech in a past and quite recent history. As employees and employees of the University, which in its past also has disgraceful cards related to the use of discrimination mechanisms based on national and religious background, we are particularly aware of the responsibility of the scientific community. Keeping silence in the face of more and more publicly manifested fascist and racist attitudes in public life would mean consent to the escalation of violence.

We strongly oppose all manifestations of racism and discrimination in social life, we do not accept the use of such mechanisms for purposes of political struggle or achieving any other benefits.

Works Commission at the Museum of Modern Art:

We, employees and employees associated in the Workers' Committee of the OZZ Employee Initiative at the Museum of Modern Art in Warsaw, we believe that another world is possible! A world in which people of different origins, skin color and religion function in the community on equal terms and co-shape our culture. We oppose racism and fascism. We demand equality and openness at all levels of social life - from workers' rights and social protection to a sense of agency and belonging.

Works Commission OZZ Inicjatywa Pracownicza at Teatr Powszechny im. Zygmunt Hübner:

Among the audience, employees and employees as well as co-workers and collaborators of the Universal Theater are people of different orientations, confessions and skin color. They all have the right to feel safe and belong to the community.

That is why we are going to the demonstration on March 16 under the slogan "Pretty Racism and Fascism!". We are opposed to humiliation and exclusion of people of a different nationality or origin. The history of Poland shows how easily fascism rhetoric becomes a fuel for the fascism of social life. There is no consent for this!

Works Committee of OZZ Employee Initiative at the Museum of the History of Polish Jews POLIN:

The POLIN Museum's mission is to "contribute to mutual understanding and respect among Poles and Jews, the societies of Europe and the world." This mission is close to us and is the starting point of our daily work. Remembering the history of racism and its consequences, we undertake contemporary topics. We organize classes during which we talk about worse treatment of people, among others due to nationality, religion, age, gender, orientation or disability. We involve representatives and representatives of various cultures, migrants and migrants, refugees and refugees in our activities.

It happens that as employees and employees of the POLIN Museum, we experience reluctance due to our workplace. We feel it is important to oppose the language of hatred together. We want to show our support to people who in various areas of life are affected by racism, xenophobia and discrimination. We want a diverse and friendly Poland.

Warsaw Environmental Commission:

For several months, our committee has several colleagues who came from Belarus to work in Poland. We know from them how massive the exploitation of workers and workers from the East is in Poland - the lack of contracts, paying salaries "under the table", problems with obtaining the promised remuneration, continuous adventures and contemptuous jokes. In industries such as catering, construction, cleaning services and green areas conservation these problems are extremely serious and widespread - it is these sectors of the economy that employ an extremely large number of immigrants and immigrants, while being particularly known for violating basic labor rights and employing "black" .

Wanting to support our colleagues in the fight for their workers' rights, we can not ignore the problem of increased racist and xenophobic sentiment. They lead to sharing a working class according to nationality or place of birth criteria and weaken the union movement, making it difficult to fight for higher wages and better working conditions for all. As a trade union, we are therefore obliged to clearly say "No!" To racism and all fascist and nationalistic movements.

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