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Poland: Hutchison Ports must reinstate union activist Marek Szymczak

In partnership with the National Section of Port Workers NSZZ Solidarność.

Proud docker and NSZZ Solidarność organiser Marek Szymczak was sacked by Hutchison Ports in Poland in May 2017. Marek was fighting for a safer job for workers at Hutchison's Gdynia terminal, campaigning for reduced outsourcing, shorter hours and a change in a culture that relied on excessive overtime, and for a collective agreement that guaranteed higher wages and better conditions for dockers in Gdynia. At the time dockers at the terminal regularly worked more than 16 hours a day, in a system where the first 8-10 hours were recorded by Hutchison, and additional hours were billed by an external company. Serious mechanical safety concerns existed in the workforce with deteriorating equipment and diminishing investment. In May 2017, Marek suffered an accident at work. With his doctor's approval, Marek took part in the international meeting of young dockers in Antwerp in June 2017. Hutchison hired a private investigator to monitor his activities while on sick leave and fired him on the basis of misuse of sick leave entitlements. In the opinion of union members Marek's sacking was designed to intimidate the workers and an escalation of Hutchison’s union-busting agenda against NSZZ Solidarność and its activists and members. For 2 years, Marek has been fighting for his reinstatement, and now he and NSZZ Solidarność are asking for your help - and international solidarity – to send a strong and clear message to Hutchison Ports to reinstate Marek Szymczak.

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