Police to introduce work-to-rule strike

The police are now to begin a work-to-rule strike, precisely following all regulation and performing their duties meticulously. Photo: PAP/ Darek Delmanowicz

After a month of giving warnings instead of tickets, police are about to begin work-to-rule protest and launch a social campaign.

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The police officers’ trade union has concluded their ongoing, month-long protest. “Reversing previous proportions between the number of tickets and warnings for minor offenses demonstrates the enormous commitment of police officers, and the validity of the demands,” the committee of the trade union announced.

On July 10, 2018, the police officers’ trade union announced a strike, which consisted of giving warnings instead of handing out tickets for minor violations. Now, as the Internal Affairs Ministry has not met the union’s demands, the strike will intensify.

Their main demands are raising police officers’ salaries by PLN 650 (EUR 150). The median salary of police officers in Poland is PLN 4,211 (EUR 966).

The unions have stepped back from retirement demands, accepting the minimum 25 years of service before retiring, yet scrapping the present requirement of being at least 55 when retiring is still one of the postulates. Police officers also demand further annual raises.

On July 16, the unions of the Border Guards, Prison Service, State Fire Service, and the Customs-Tax Service joined the protest.

The Internal Affairs Ministry claims it is open to negotiations. The Internal Minister, Joachim Brudziński, has said that it is a “common goal of the Ministry and society to further improve the working conditions of public services.”

The police are now to begin a work-to-rule strike, precisely following all regulation and performing their duties meticulously, which may cause a significant slowdown or even paralyze law enforcement.

Another part of the protest includes reaching out to society, from August 16 the police are setting up a campaign “I support the police officers’ protest. I drive safely.” Within the framework of the program, police officers will hand out car-stickers informing other officers that the driver supports their demands, and therefore the driver could expect concessionary gestures.

The strike will last until the union’s demands are met.