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(en) Poland, Situation and actions taken by the Employee Initiative during the coronavirus epidemic - a message from the National Commission [machine translation]

Date Fri, 20 Mar 2020 09:49:41 +0200

An employee disinfects a train (March 2020)Koleje Slaskie (kolejeslaskie.com)
Communication from the OZZIP National Commission of 13 March 2020 regarding actions taken during the coronavirus epidemic (COVID-19) ---- Due to the risk of infection with the COVID-19 virus, we recommend closing large workplaces for the duration of the pandemic, provided that their activity is not necessary during this period or remote work, and in the last resort - where this is not possible - in the duty roster system, allowing contacts with other people. Unfortunately, the nature of the work performed excludes the transition to "work from home" in most workplaces, hence in the face of the growing number of patients the only safe solution for employees, their families and, as a result, the entire society - the closure of large warehouses and factories remains.

We remind employers that the law requires the payment of remuneration for a period of downtime (Article 81 of the Labor Code) when the employee was ready to work, but could not take it because of obstacles on the part of the employer, regardless of whether they are the result of his decision , e.g. administrative authorities. Unfortunately, this provision does not apply to persons employed under mandate contracts, specific work contracts or self-employed workers.

In some workplaces, in addition to the daily struggle for their rights, our commissions have been fighting for the provision of cleaning products for several days. Therefore, we also remind you that employers are also required to ensure adequate health and safety measures, and failure to do so is punishable by imprisonment (Article 220 of the Criminal Code). Intervened in this matter, among others Factory Committee at the Regional Directorate for Environmental Protection in Lublin, Factory Committee at Avon Distribution Poland Sp. z o. o. or the Inter-Enterprise Committee at H Cegielski Poznan SA

The pandemic has exposed the weakness of working people. Pathologies that we have been pointing out for years, such as low wages, employment on junk contracts, outsourcing and the collapse of public services, make us feel more vulnerable. We expect public authorities to spread the social costs of the epidemic fairly. We call for the support of employees and employees who are forced to take the risk of getting infected, whether due to coercion on the part of employers, the nature of work (e.g. health protection) or economic coercion. Some of us are also threatened with a significant loss of income. We do not agree that the aid should go only to entrepreneurs.

We have prepared a legal guide for all working people ( read the guide - LINK ). It contains a discussion of the most important regulations regarding the organization of work, remuneration in the event of the closure of a workplace or suspension of its activities, sick leave and occupational health and safety. We encourage you to share its content with our committees.

We answer the questions of our members and our members regarding their rights on an ongoing basis. We collect data from individual committees regarding the situation in workplaces. So far, factory commissions were forced to take intervention measures, including in the logistics and production industry. People working in warehouses and production halls, where several hundred and sometimes thousands of people stay at the same time, are seriously exposed to infection of themselves and loved ones. Our commission operating at Amazon demands to inform employees how the employer intends to ensure the safety of employees, and in the event of an increase in the number of infected in the coming days - the closure of warehouses. In addition, employees put forward the demand for additional paid leave, no matter how many days they have already used,Sign the petition KZ AMAZON - LINK ).

In connection with the cancellation of artistic events, Warsaw committees operating in the cultural industry sent a position to the Culture Office of the City of Warsaw. Warsaw. We are particularly worried and worried about the announcement of paying the parking discount or even suggesting that employees take leave during quarantine. Such actions are unlawful. We also recommend taking care of people employed under civil law contracts by offering them where remote work is not possible, replacement work. For the sake of common safety, we would like to remind you that cleaners need to be equipped with hygiene products, even if they are employed by external companies ( Read position - LINK ). Culture Office of the Capital City of Warsaw Warsaw sent this position and recommendations to the capital's cultural institutions.

Company committees operating at universities in connection with a break in class are demanding that employees and service and administration employees receive a referral to remote work or that they should be on duty without reducing their remuneration. There is no reason for them to be forced to take the risk of interrupting home quarantine, just to appear in empty buildings ( Commission letter at the University of Warsaw - LINK; Commission letter at the University of Wroclaw - LINK ).

The National Commission also decided to postpone the Working Congress planned for the end of March. However, we do not stop working.

Solidarity is our weapon!

National Commission of the Polish Trade Union Workers' Initiative

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