Tesco stores across Britain and Ireland were picketed on 4 August in solidarity with two Polish agency workers sacked after protesting about conditions at a distribution centre in Dublin.
The Polish workers, Radek Sawicki and Zbyszek Bukala, had complained not only that agency workers, many of whom are Polish, receive only 2/3 the wages of contracted staff, but that they are pressganged into rapidly increasing production targets. The Irish trade union of which Sawicki is a member, SIPTU, is taking the agency to court for exploitation.
The Transport and General Workers’ Union announced that its Polish members would take part in the solidarity protests. Organiser Ewa Jasiewicz said that “Polish workers in the UK have the same legal rights to fair pay, dignity at work, holidays and insurance as British workers yet despite Poland’s accession to the EU in May 2004, Polish workers are still being exploited. With the self-organisation and solidarity growing between migrant and domestic workers, we know this will come to an end.”