PM Kopacz meeting with miners
PR dla Zagranicy
The head of government is conducting talks with disgruntled miners’ unions over planned layoffs.
Photo: PAP/Andrzej Grygiel
Workers at four additional Polish mines have commenced an underground strike, bringing the total number of protesting sites to eight.
“If anyone expected us not to expand our protest, they are living in a dream,” said Dominik Kolorz, the head of the Solidarity trade union in Silesia, adding that it was obvious that following “farce talks” over the weekend, more mines would join the strike action.
Meanwhile, Prime Minister Ewa Kopacz was in talks on Monday with industry representatives to present her restructuring plan for the Polish mining industry.
The government originally planned to propose a severance package of four months’ wages to the thousands of workers who will lose their jobs at state-controlled Kompania Weglowa, which operates several coal and lignite mines in the south of the country.
According to unofficial sources close to RMF FM, on Monday PM Kopacz proposed a larger package to union leaders, who were still holding closed-door meetings at 6 P.M. Warsaw time.
RMF FM also reports that the Prime Minister might offer to sell the mines which are set to be closed for a symbolic sum to either unions, or the workers themselves.
“These suggestions are not acceptable,” union leaders told the station. If Ewa Kopacz has already made up her mind to close these mines, it would be better for her to submit her resignation, because this makes no sense,” said Jaroslaw Grzesik head of the miner’s arm of the Solidarity union. (rg)