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History in dates

1980

July, 1st
The Government introduces so called “commercial prices” (market prices) for meat products in factory eateries. This minor decision provokes an increasing wave of workers’ protests.

July/August
A wave of strikes is running through the country. Jacek Kuroń says: “Do not burn the committees! Establish your own ones!”

August 14th
The strike in Gdansk Shipyard starts, after two days it becomes a general strike of all companies in Region, then in all of the country. This is the beginning of “the Polish August”.

August 17th
The Inter-Enterprise Strike Committee (MKS), led by an electrician Lech Wałęsa, announces 21 postulates (including e.g. the right to establish free trade unions, freedom of speech and the right to strike)

August 24th
The Plenary of the Central Committee of Polish United Workers Party (PZPR) dismisses eight close associates of Edward Gierek (PZPR General Secretary), including the Prime Minister Edward Babiuch.

August 30th
The Governmental commission ratifies the agreement with the MKS in Szczecin.

August 31st
The agreement is ratified in Gdańsk. At the gate of the shipyard Lech Wałęsa says: “We have free and independent trade unions!”.

September 17th
The representatives of over 30 regional founding committees adopt the resolution establishing the Independent and Self-governing Trade Union (NSZZ) “Solidarność”.

November 10th
The Supreme Court acknowledges the Constitution of NSZZ “ Solidarność”. In 1981 about 9.5 million people were members of the union.
1981

February 11th
Former Minister of Defence, Wojciech Jaruzelski, is appointed the Prime Minister.

March 19th
“Bydgoszcz provocation” – special group of Security Service (SB) assaulted representatives of “ Solidarność”, including Jan Rulewski, the president of the regional board. There is a threat of confrontation, especially dangerous due to military manoeuvres with participation of the Soviet army.

March 27th
4-hour general warning strike conducted in all of Poland.

March 30th
“Warsaw agreement” between the Government and “ Solidarność” ends the Bydgoszcz conflict. “ Solidarność” cancels the planned general strike.

September 5th – 10th, September 26th – October 7th
I National Congress of Delegates of NSZZ “Solidarność” elects Lech Wałęsa for the President of the Union and adopts “Message to working people of Eastern Europe”.

October 17th
Plenary of the PZPR elects general Wojciech Jaruzelski the First Secretary of the party.

December 11th – 12th
Meeting of the National Commission of NSZZ “ Solidarność” in Gdansk.

December 13th
In the night of 12th to 13th of December, the decree of the National State Council introduces the martial law in Poland. The authority is transferred to the Military Council of National Salvation (WRON) presided by general Wojciech Jaruzelski. All NGO’s organisations, including NSZZ “ Solidarność” are suspended; about 10 thousand union and opposition activists are held in detention camps.

December 14th
General strikes in companies, mines, and steelworks factories, shipyards and harbours all over the country. The strikes are pacified by ZOMO (riot militia), anti-terrorist units and panzer army. Primatial Committee for Help for the Detained established in Warsaw as the first of 36 committees organised in other cities and dioceses.

December 16th
9 miners are killed in effect of ZOMO assault in “Wujek” coalmine.

December 17th
The first underground paper, “Wiadomości” edited in Warsaw.

December 18th
Pope John Paul II appeals for putting an end to the bloodshed in Poland.

December 1981 – January 1982
First martial courts. The leaders of the strikes sentenced for 2 to 4 years of imprisonment.

1982

February 11th
First issue of “Tygodnik Mazowsze” (weekly) edited in Warsaw, in next every years single issue will be printed in 30-40 thousand copies

April 12th
Radio “ Solidarność:” first broadcast in Warsaw.

April 22nd
Establishing of Temporary Co-ordination Commission (TKK) of NSZZ “ Solidarność” led by Lech Wałęsa (and: Zbigniew Bujak, Mazowsze Region, Władysław Frasyniuk, Lower Silesia Region, Władysław Hardek, Małopolska Region, Bogdan Lis, Gdańsk Region)

May 1st
Many thousands participants in independent 1st May demonstrations in Gdańsk, Białystok, Toruń, Łódź, Szczecin and other cities.

May 3rd
NSZZ “ Solidarność” organises another demonstrations in Warsaw, Cracow, Toruń, Elbląg, Gliwice, Lublin, Gdańsk, Szczecin and other cities. Brutal interventions of ZOMO.

August 31st
Anniversary of ratification of August Agreements. Demonstrations in Gdańsk, Wrocław, Cracow, Katowice, Szczecin, Gorzów Wielkopolski and other cities. Armed intervention of militia in Lubin (copper basin), three dead, many people arrested.

October 8th
Sejm adopts new Act on trade unions. All trade unions existing before 13 December 1981 dissolved. Street demonstrations in Gdańsk.

November 12th
Lech Wałęsa released from detention camp.

December 31st
The martial law suspended by the resolution of the National Council.

1983

October 5th
Lech Wałęsa awarded Peace Nobel Prize.

1984

October 19th
Jerzy Popiełuszko, priest of “ Solidarność” in Warsaw, hijacked and murdered by officers of the Ministry of Internal Affairs.

November 24th
Establishment of All-Polish Agreement of Trade Unions (OPZZ), organisation obedient towards the communist authorities. According to official propaganda about 6 million people become members.

1985

June
OPZZ takes over the assets of other trade unions (about 3.4 billion zł). Estimated value of the assets of NSZZ “ Solidarność” was 153 million zł plus financial means of 613 million zł and 64 thousand USD.

1986

September 11th
Amnesty for all persons sentenced or arrested for “crimes and violations against the state and public order” declared by general Czesław Kiszczak. 225 political prisoners are free.

September 29th
Lech Wałęsa appoints openly the Temporary Council of NSZZ “Solidarność” composed of: Bogdan Borusewicz, Zbigniew Bujak, Władysław Frasyniuk, Tadeusz Jedynak, Bogdan Lis, Janusz Pałubicki, Józef Pinior. The beginning of the process of coming out into the open of regional and enterprise structures of the union.

Autumn
NSZZ “Solidarność” becomes member organisation of the ICFTU and WCL.

1988

April – August
Another wave of strikes.

August 20th
The Committee for Defence of the Country (KOK) begins preparations for introduction of martial law.

August 27th
General Czesław Kiszczak, the Minister of the Interior, in a television speech, proposes Round Table negotiations.

August 31st
Another confidential meeting of Wałęsa and Kiszczak. Kiszczak appeals for putting an end to strikes and promises to take care of legalisation of “ Solidarność”.

December 18th
Establishment of the Citizens’ Committee led by Lech Wałęsa.

1989

February 6th
Round Table negotiations start in Warsaw.

April 5th
Ratification of the Round Table documents: the agreement provides for relegalisation of “Solidarność”, free elections to the Sejm (Lower House of the Parliament) where 35% of seats are to be contested freely.

April 17th
Voivod Court in Warsaw registers the Independent and Self-governing Trade Union “ Solidarność” with the seat in Gdańsk.

June 4th
Elections to the Sejm and Senate. In the first and second round the Citizens’ Committee gains 161 seats (out of 161 possible) in the Sejm and 99 in the Senate (out of 100 possible).

July 19th
By the majority of 1 vote in the Parliament Wojciech Jaruzelski becomes the President of People’s Republic of Poland.

August 23rd
The Sejm appoints Tadeusz Mazowiecki for the Prime Minister. PZPR maintains 5 ministries, including Internal Affairs and Defence.

1990

January 29th
The last congress of PZPR decides to dissolve the party.

April 19th – 24th
II National Congress of Delegates of NSZZ “ Solidarność”. Lech Wałęsa is elected president for the second time.

May 27th
The first fully democratic elections to local governments. The candidates from the Citizens’ Committees gain 41% of mandates.

December 9th
In the second round of the elections Lech Wałęsa becomes the President of Poland.

December 12th
Lech Wałęsa resigns from the chair of the president of NSZZ “ Solidarność”.

1991

February 22nd – 24th
III National Congress of Delegates of NSZZ “ Solidarność” in Gdańsk elects Marian Krzaklewski for the president of the Union.

April 10th
First division of the Red Army leaves Poland.

October 27th
First fully free parliamentary elections in Poland since II World War. The majority of seats go to Democratic Union and Alliance of Democratic Leftwing (SLD – post–communists).

Autumn
NSZZ “Solidarność” is granted an observer statute of the ETUC.

1992

June 4th
Sharp political crisis due to so called “agents list” of Security Service. By the motion of the President Wałęsa the Parliament dismisses Jan Olszewski.

July 11-14th
IV National Congress of Delegates of NSZZ “Solidarność”. Marian Krzaklewski is re-elected the president of the Union.

September
Negotiations start with the Government on the Pact on State Enterprise in Transformation.

1993

February
The Pact on State Enterprise in Transformation signed by social partners and the Government. The Pact provides for setting of the Tripartite Committee and gives a legal framework for collective bargaining at the national level.

May 19th
Establishment of All-Polish Strike Headquarters aimed at preparations to a general strike. The MP’s of the “Solidarność” Caucus propose a vote of no confidence for the government of Hanna Suchocka.

May 28th
The Sejm adopts the vote of no confidence for the government of Hanna Suchocka.

May 29th
President Lech Wałęsa dissolves the Parliament.

September 19th
Parliamentary elections. NSZZ “ Solidarność” receives 4.9%, which is too low (5% threshold) for the Sejm, but 9 representatives have seats in the Senate.

1994

September 9th
Marian Krzaklewski presents in the Parliament the draft of the State Constitution prepared by the Union and signed by one million people.

September 29th – October 2nd
VI National Congress of Delegates. Strike Fund is established (5% of dues).

1995

January 4th
End of 33-day hunger strike of the employees of health care and education. The Government makes an commitment to raise their salaries of 6% above the inflation.

November 14th
In the second round of the presidential elections Aleksander Kwaśniewski defeats Lech Wałęsa (51% against 49%) and becomes the President of Poland.

December
NSZZ “Solidarność” becomes member organisation of the ETUC.

1996

June 26th – 29th
VIII National Congress of Delegates of NSZZ “ Solidarność” in Poznań. The Union decides to participate in the parliamentary elections within the framework of the coalition of Electoral Action of Solidarity (AWS) based on the Union’s programme.

1997

September 21st
A great victory of AWS in the elections.

October 17th
Jerzy Buzek (AWS) becomes the Prime Minister.

Autumn
NSZZ “Solidarność” becomes member organisation of the TUAC.

1999

January 1st
Three reforms: administration (16 voivodships), health care and social insurance.

September 1st
Launching of the reform of the education system.

September 22
Prime Minister Jerzy Buzek presented scheme establishments of his government for the next two years called ”The New Opening”

October 21
Trade unionists from Mining Sector of Solidarnosc blocked two railway nodes. The government has not implemented the restructuring program of mining sector in the form previously accepted by the authorities which was the main reason of the strike.

December 10-11
IX National Congress of Delegates in Wladyslawowo. Among forty documents adopted by the delegates only three concerned “big politics”, others referred to the situation of the workers and to trade union matters. IX National Congress of Delegates passed a bill saying that Solidarnosc would not perform political functions.

2000

April 18
National Commission supported the candidacy of Marian Krzaklewski in the presidential elections.

May 20-23
Meeting of Shipyard Committee of The European Metalworkers' Federation in Gdansk was for the first time held outside of the borders of the European Union.

June 19
During the session of the Council of Europe, a demonstration of trade unionists from the European Union was held in the Portuguese city of Porto. Fifty thousand of people from Belgium, France, Greece, Italy, Portugal, Spain and a delegation of thirty people from Solidarnosc took part in the demonstration.

August 29
International conference in Gdansk Artus Court, with the participation of Prime Ministers from Bulgaria,  Malta, Morocco, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain and representatives of the parties forming the European Citizens Party which constitutes the majority of Christian and democratic European parties. The chairman of the European Parliament Nicole Fontaine was also present at the conference.

August 30
XII National Congress of Delegates.

August 31
Celebrations commemorating the 20th Anniversary of establishing Independent and Self-Governing Trade Union (NSZZ) "Solidarnosc". Five thousand people form all Poland took part in the mass celebrated at the monument to the Fallen Shipyard Workers.

December 6
In the eve of The Group of 15 summit in Nice there was a demonstration of the trade unionists from all the EU and candidate countries. Over 80 thousand people took part demanding ’Social Europe’ which meant inclusion of the Charter of Fundamental Rights into the European Treaties. At the head of the demonstration were French leaders of trade union federations and Secretary-General of EKZZ Emilio Gabaglio and a 49 people group of activists form Solidarnosc.

2001

March 1
Lower Chamber of Deputies (Sejm) outvoted amendment of the labour law according to which an 8 hour workday five days a week would abide. Work time would be gradually shortened to reach eventually 42 hours in 2001, in 2002 - 41 hours and in 2003 - 40 hours. Despite the shorter working week the wages would remain the same. Opinions about reducing the work time were divided. Citizen’s Platform and Freedom Union were predominantly against.

May 15
National Commission of Solidarnosc decided that Trade Union would withdraw from territorial structure of AWS (Solidarity Electoral Action).
National Committee of UNESCO Program “The Memory of the World” makes efforts to include 21 famous postulates to the "World Memory List”. The postulates were scribbled on boards and hung over the main gate of the Gdańsk Shipyard during the strike in August 1980.

October 25-26
XIV National Congress of Delegates in Poznan.

December 13
Delegation of Solidarnosc took part in the demonstration organised by the European Confederation of Trade Unions. About 80 thousand trade unionists from the entire Europe came to Laeken near Brussels.

2002

April 3
The Presidium declared strike alert when Chamber of Deputies started works on the change of the Labour Law.

August 22
A protest of Cable Factory workers in Ozarow Mazowiecki.

August 26
50 thousand trade unionists from the whole Poland came for the demonstration against the changes in the Labour Law.

May 31
Representatives of Lithuanian Union Workers were guests to the National Commission.

August 6
Demonstration in Warsaw; trade unionists form Solidarnosc demanded adoption of the labour law amendment elaborated by the Union. 200 thousand people signed the project.

August 31
Central anniversary of the August Events in Lublin. The 20th Anniversary of the tragedy on the streets of Lublin was reminisced with due ceremony. At that time during peace demonstration the police opened fire on the street demonstrators and three of them were killed.

September 14-15
XX National Pilgrimage of the Working People to Jasna Gora. Among the participants were trade unionists from Solidarnosc and firemen who took part in a rescue operation after the tragedy of World Trade Center.

September 16
Solidarnosc organised a rally in front of the court where an action was brought against Wojciech Jaruzelski and others accused of death of several dozens in December 1970.

September 26-28
XV National Congress of Delegates elects Janusz Sniadek for the new president of Solidarnosc.

October 17
Passing away of Alina Pienkowska, one of the August Agreement Signatories

November 14
National Commission of Solidarnosc passed a bill by virtue of which began collecting signatures under legislative initiative in order to restore pre-retirement allowances.

December 29
First changes of the amendment of labour law came into force

2003

February 25
Visit of the Ambassador of The United States - Christopher Hill, he laid flowers at the monument in Gdansk and Gdynia and met with representatives of Solidarnosc.

April 25
20 thousand manifestation of Solidarnosc in the streets of Warsaw, demonstrators demanded new jobs, abiding the law wages and the restoration of pre-retirement allowances.

April 29
650 thousand signatures were collected (while100 thousand were required) by Solidarnosc under the bill project to restore pre-retirement allowances. The project including the signatures was handed to the deputy speaker.

July 1
Changes in the bill concerning the trade unions and group dismissal came into force. Changes in the regulations of the legal protection of trade unionists and group dismissals.

July 9
All the trains stopped in Pomerania as the result of the railway workers protest. The reason of the protest was not keeping to the adjustment from April 2003 by the government.

July 29
The first reading of the citizen’s bill project about employment and prevention of the unemployment. Over 2 thousand trade unionists demanded restoration of pre-retirement benefits.

July 30
One and a half thousand workers from Ostrowiec steelworks manifested in the morning in front of the City Office as the steel works was on the verge of bankruptcy. 

July 31
Railway workers stopped train traffic in Silesia.

August 20
Several thousand workers of Stalowa Wola steelworks began occupation of the district office building. Thousands of steelworkers protested on the streets of Stalowa Wola against the degradation of the company.

August 28
The boards with 21 postulates were included in the UNESCO Memory of the World International Registry as the most important documents of particular value to all mankind.

August 30
5 thousand trade unionists protested in Ostrow Mazowiecki on the Solidarity Day with Factory Wagon SA workers.

September 11
10 thousand miners protested on the streets of Warsaw. They demanded withdrawal of the decision concerning the closure of four mines.

September 16
Trade unionists came from all the country to Elbląg to manifest their support in favour of the dismissed Hetman workers for their trade union activity.

September 26-27
XVI National Congress of Delegates in Stalowa Wola. The Congress obliged the National Commission to carry national consultation about the form of the protest including general strike.

October 22
National Commission of Solidarnosc realizing the resolution of National Congress of Delegates announced the first stage of Polish Protest Days against antisocial policy of the government. Solidarnosc demanded from the government: wages protection, effective activities reduction of the  unemployment, system of protection for the dismissed including unemployment benefit and pre-retirement allowances, elimination of persecution for trade union activity, implementation of the postulates for threatened trades and pensioners. National Commission expected the media to enable them to debate about employee and social postulates with the participation of Solidarnosc and other trade unions.

November 7
National Strike Team of Solidarnosc has officially announced the beginning of Days of Protest at a press conference.

November 11
Almost 3 thousand trade unionists from Poland took part in the pilgrimage to the Holy Father. The representatives of Solidarnosc took part in the mess celebrated by the bishop Tadeusz Goclowski – the National Priest of Working People. After the mass, during the general audience three presidents of the Trade Union Solidarnosc; Lech Walesa, Marian Krzaklewski and Janusz Sniadek handed a gift to the Holy Father.

November 17
35 thousand miners took part in a 24 hour strike in Silesian mines, the biggest mine strike since 1995.

November 18
11 thousand trade unionists took part in the healthcare manifestation in Warsaw. The manifestation was for the first time organized by three trade union organizations; Solidarnosc, OPZZ and The forum of Trade Unions. The representatives of the organization “Primum non nocere” also joined the trade unionists. The representatives of the healthcare protested against the transformation of the healthcare into mercantile law companies which can lead to bankruptcy of many hospitals and to the uncontrolled privatization.

November 25
Over two thousand pensioners and handicapped protested in front of the Sejm against governmental proposals of pensioners‘ verification, resignation from annual valorisation of retirement gratuities and the elimination of PFRON. In the demonstration took part blind and deaf people, moving on wheelchairs or walking on crutches. Many organizations associating the handicapped joined the protest, e.g. the foundation of Brother Albert.

November 26
50 thousand people took part in a national demonstrations and rallies against anti-social policy of the government at the end of The National Protest Day.

December 8
Representatives of Railway Trade Union went on a hunger strike in the seat of Regional Section of Railway workers “S” in Warsaw. The railway workers form Lublin, Krakow, Katowice, Gdynia and Szczecin also started strike hunger. Trade unionists protested against: reduction of regional trains in new timetable, lack of decision about abolition of excise tax on traction fuel and against regionalization of the company. Railway workers opposed to the violation of the employee law, worker’s intimidation and hindering trade union activity.

December 19
Railway workers joined the spreading strike action. The trains stopped in Tarnowskie Gory, Czechowice-Dziedzice, Pszczyna, Jaworzno ,Lublin, Nowy Sącz, Gdynia, Olsztyn, Wrocław, Miłkowice.

December 22
After twelve days the railways strike was over. During the strike 130 railway workers were starving. Railway workers decided to suspend the protest when the Sejm granted 550 million PLN from budget reserves for the regional transport.

2004

March 25
Rallies in Warsaw, Wroclaw and Lodz in the support of striking workers “Jedynka Wrocławska” and PKS Kozienice. In both companies employers dismissed their workers for taking part in legal protest.

April 7
Over ten thousand workers manifested on the streets of Szczecin against economic degradation of the region and elimination of workplaces.

April 16
Citizen’s Spokesman, professor Andrzej Zoll met with Solidarnosc representatives. The meeting took place by the initiative of Solidarnosc and referred to the self-employment. According to Solidarnosc it was unacceptable to replace employment relationship by a fee-for-task agreement in case when a contract of employment should be concluded

April 28
John Monks, the General Secretary of the European Trade Union Confederation met with Solidarnosc representatives. “If it had not been for the events in Gdansk shipyard in 1980 we would not experience The Enlargement of the European Union today. They were the forecast of the end of post-war Europe. Gdansk is the cradle of New Europe. It is also the place of birth of a unique Trade Union. I would like this new Europe to be dynamic and successful” – said Mr. Monks.

May 7
3 thousand trade unionists took part in the demonstration in the support of PKS Kozienice. Trade unionists form PKS Kozienice went on strike when the board of the company dismissed the chairman of Enterprise Commission Solidarnosc on disciplinary grounds along with 170 other workers.

May 29
XVII National Congress of Delegates established a new constitution of Solidarnosc. Until the very beginning of the Congress there were disputes over some regulations of the constitution concerning the structure of trade unions in big corporations. Among 317 delegates, 219 persons voted in favour of a new statute, 80 were against and 18 abstained from voting. Works on the new statute have been going on for over 10 years.

June 30
Trade Union representatives and employers discussed Self-Employment at the Citizen’s Spokesman’s office. “Forcing a worker to conclude a fee-for-task agreement instead of a contract of employment is a violation of Human Rights”- said Andrzej Zoll.

July 27
District Court in Gdansk registered the new statute of Solidarnosc

August 31
24th Anniversary of August Events and Gdansk Agreement in 1980. Three presidents of the Trade Union; Lech Walesa, Marian Krzaklewski and Janusz Sniadek laid a wreath at the monument. Local authorities of Pomeranian and Solidarnosc appealed to the members of the parliament for establishing 31st August a national holiday - The Day of Solidarity and Freedom.

November 24
Solidarnosc supported Ukrainian aspirations for democracy. As a token of solidarity orange flags were displayed at the office of the National Commission.

December 14
During the Congress of International Confederation of Free Trade Unions in Miyazaki (Japan) it has been decided to unite the ICFTU and the WCL. The representatives of Solidarnosc reminded that they were in favour of the unification of the biggest worldwide trade organizations during the congress in Jastrzebie Zdroj.

December 23
A notary act of gift concerning the famous Gdansk Shipyard Hall was signed for National Commission of Solidarnosc in Gdańsk. Synerga 99 - the  previous owner handed down  a historic hall with a marked off plot on the former grounds of Gdansk Shipyard to the National Commission

2005

January 4
The Presidium of the National Commission appealed to all the members and sympathisers of trade unions for help to the victims of the tragedy of tsunami in Asia.

January 26
Funeral of Jan Nowak-Jezioranski in Warsaw. Delegation of Trade Union Solidarnosc took part in the ceremony. Jan Nowak-Jezioranski died on the 20th Jan. His life was and will always remain a wonderful lesson of patriotism. Everything he did in his life was with dedication; he was the director of Radio Free Europe, activist of the Polish community abroad and a writer. He always found an opportunity to serve his Homeland.

January 10
Vice president  Maciej Jankowski signed a long-term agreement about co-operation with the president of Tesco Polska – Mr.Kevin Grace. Trade Unionists and the management of Tesco agreed to act productively, to support the laws and interests of the workers, clients and shareholders of Tesco. All the resolutions would be realized through dialogue and partnership. The fundamental task of the cooperation is to care about the development of the company which will have a positive effect on the working conditions.

February 11
6 trade unionists from Health Protection Secretariat went on strike hunger. According to the Protestants it is the final form of protest against the degradation of Polish healthcare.

April 2
The Holy Father John Paul II died at 21.37. Many thousand people form Poland including representatives of Solidarnosc took part in the funeral which took place on the 8th April.

April 21
The Presidium of National Commission put a proposal to the National Congress of Delegates to name John Paul II as “Distinguished Man of Merit of Solidranosc”

April 26
Agreement on co-operation between Makro Cash and Carry Polska SA and the National Commission of Solidarnosc was signed in Warsaw. Both sides expressed willingness to co-operate and respect the principles of the social dialogue.

June 21
The president of Solidarnosc Janusz Sniadek handed the copies of the board with 21 postulates from August 1980 to The Secretary General of The International Confederation of Free Trade Unions.

July 14
Solidarnosc and Carrefour Polska prolonged cooperation agreement in Warsaw. The agreement defines in detail the principles of cooperation and the competence of organization. Carrefour management  assured to respect employees’ work to establish Trade Unions.

July 27
Sejm announced 31st of August as the Day of Solidarity and Freedom.  According to the bill The Day of Solidarity and Freedom should be celebrated to commemorate the Anniversary of historic mass uprising to freedom. The Sejm decided that 16th October will be the Day of John Paul II. Both holidays are free from work.

August 30
4 thousand people took part in XVII National Congress of Delegates in Hala Oliwia . The Congress took special stand on the 25th Anniversary of establishing Solidarnosc. The Congress accepted occasional documents; the letter to The Holy Father Benedict as a tribute to the memory of The Pope John Paul II.

August 31
Founding act to the construction of the European Centre of Solidarity took place in Gdansk

September 14
The National Commission called the members and sympathisers of Solidarnosc to support Lech Kaczynski in the presidential elections.

October 13
XIX National Congress of Delegates

October 26
President-elect Lech Kaczynski met with trade unionists during the session of National Commission. Lech Kaczynski assured that Solidarnosc will be one of the most important partners during his presidency.

December 14
Lech Walesa received the Medal of Merit for NSZZ “Solidarnosc”

December 29
The president Lech Kaczynski met at the Presidential Palace with the National Commission and the Regional Audit Commission of Solidarnosc. Lech Kaczynski expressed hopes that the meeting would be the beginning of a balanced mutual cooperation with Solidarnosc to which he would always feel attached.

2006

May 30
Solidarnosc and its partner SYNDEX Group signed an agreement concerning training and providing experts reports for trade Union’s use. The cooperation between Solidarnosc and SYNDEX Group will concern development of social dialogue on the enterprise and branch levels both in domestic and international representative institutions.

June 25
30th Anniversary of Radom strikes

June 28
50th Anniversary of June Events in Poznan. The Pope Benedict XVI wrote to the participants of the Anniversary celebrations in Poznan: “The blood shed by workers, women and children in Poznan has not been wasted but turned out to be the sowing seeds of freedom which resulted in the fall of Stalinist system and  the independence of the nation”.

September 28-30
20th National Congress of Delegates in Szczecin. 353 Delegates from regional and branch structures elected new leadership. Janusz Sniadek was elected for president of the Union for the second term.

October 10-11
The National Commission of NSZZ „Solidarnosc” adopted a statement on violation of workers’ rights and appealed to the workers for organizing trade unions. The union called upon the employers to cease repressions against workers attempting to organize trade unions, and also called upon the government and the parliament to adopt legal measures ensuring effective enforcement of the constitutional right to organize.

November 1
The International Confederation of Trade Unions was officially founded in Vienna by the fusion of the World Confederation of Labour and the International Confederation of Free Trade Unions..

November 14
Secretariat of Banking, Trade and Insurance Employees formed a rally at the gates of the Parliament to demand enforcement of legal ban on shop trade on Sundays and holidays.

November 17
The employees of Polish Post organised in „S” opened a collective dispute with the employer, demanding increase of the lowest wages, regulation of working time and social packages for all employees. All the demands were rejected by the management.

November 20
Janusz Sniadek  signed an agreement with the Irish SIPTU on support and co-operation on organising, in reference to significant increase of Polish migrant workers in Ireland.

December 6
The National Commission of „S” adopted a resolution including the Unions’ priorities for the term 2006-2010. Increase of wages, effective protection of trade union and workers’ rights and economic security of retirees and organizing new members were on the top of the list.

December 19
In an attempt to make savings the government deprived the railways employees their retirement scheme. Some 10 thousand railways workers participated in a rally to protest against elimination of their special scheme.

2007

January 29
Founding agreement of the European Solidarity Centre was signed in Gdansk Town Hall. The ESC is an institution of culture.

March 30
"S” members in Fiat factory in Tychy organised a rally in protest against low wages and discriminating of the “S” members. The workers received support from other regions and employees from Fiat headquarters in Italy.

April 19-20
Jerzy Buzek, MEP, invited the Presidium of the Union to a meeting with representatives of the European Parliament, including the spokesman H.G. Poettering, and EC commissaries D.Grybauskaite and V.Spidla, discussing the issues of European financial policy and employment and social policy.

April 24
Trade union representatives from Czech Rep., Hungary, Slovakia and Poland called upon the governments and employers’ organsations to respect the principles of dialogue, co-operation and understanding the arguments of the workers.

June 7
The National Section of Trade of NSZZ “S” organised a general protest action on Corpus Christi Day encourtaging the members to ‘work-to-rule’ action in many retails shops and supermarkets. Many non-organised employees joined the action.

June 11
An agreement between the government and the National Protest Committee of Railways Workers was signed. However, the National Section of Railways Workers of „Solidarnosc” rejected the agreement due to the fact that the bill on bridge pensions was entirely rejected by the National Commission of „S”.

June 19-20
The National Commission of „S” started organising all-national protest action. The campaign goals were: increase of minimum wage, increase of remuneration in public sector, medical dimension of regulations influencing pensioners and adoption of missing strategy for migration workers. In the course of the campaign the Union managed to negotiate the minimum wage equal to 40% of average monthly wage since 2008.

August 26
The Union started a social campaign “Poland friendly to workers”, the goals of which were sustainable employment, ensuring the constitutional right to organise and collective bargaining.

August 29-30
21st National Congress of Delegates in Legnica. The delegates adopted Program Resolution of the Union and evaluated the first year of the term of office, during which the Union focused on increasing wages.

October 5
The national action A Workers Friendly Employer was organised by the union in order to acknowledge and promote best practices in companies throughout Poland. President Lech Kaczynski bestowed patronage to his action.

October 18
Due to another plan of privatising hospitals the NSZZ „S” officially rejected any attempts of privatising health care.  The statement sent to media said the Union considers privatising a huge threat for general accessibility to medical services, especially for poorer citizens.

November 8
The founding act of the European Solidarity Centre was signed in Gdansk Arthur’s Court. The President and Deputy President signed the act on behalf of the Union.

November 22–23 
A conference on CSR organised by Confrontations Europe was held in ECOSOC, Brussels. 12 members of the Presidium of NSZZ „S” participated in the event, Janusz Sniadek participated in a panel discussion on improvement of quality and quantity of information in CSR.

 

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