What we do
The Intersectoral Trade Union of the Ukrainian Workers in Poland was created with the help of OPZZ.
The All-Poland Alliance of Trade Unions (OPZZ) is the largest nationwide umbrella confederation of trade unions in Poland, comprised both of unified nationwide trade union organisations and the sectoral federations of trade unions. The OPZZ aims to ensure decent living and working conditions in the democratic society. The tasks of the OPZZ are in particular:
protection of rights and dignity, as well as the professional and social interests of workers, pensioners, and unemployed as well as their families,
protection of trade unions rights and freedoms,
influence on the social and economic policy, in line with the interests of society,
working towards the development and consolidation of democratic rights, social relations and civil freedoms,
creating the social activism and shaping professional ethics and culture of interpersonal relations.
The OPZZ was established in 1984. It is independent to any political party.
All unions affiliated to the OPZZ are grouped in 7 branches:
Mining and Energy
Construction and Woodworkers
Commerce, Services, Culture and Art
The OPZZ is represented at the local level in all 16 regions (województwo) as well as in majority of districts (powiat).
The OPZZ defines its policies independently and democratically through its Congress, Council and Presidium.
Congress determines the general policy of the OPZZ. It takes place every four years and is attended by delegates from all affiliated unions. It elects the OPZZ President and the President of the Auditory Commission. The last Congress took place in Warsaw in May 2014 and adopted a Programme for the four years until 2018.
The OPZZ Council is the supreme executive body between congresses. It is made up of representatives of the member organisations, proportional to their membership. It takes place not less frequently than three times a year. The Presidium decides on measures to implement the policies adopted by the Council. It meets not less frequently than every two months.
The elected leadership team (President and Vice-Presidents) manages the OPZZ's day-to-day activities. It is responsible for relations with the public and state institutions, political parties, employers' associations, non-governmental organisations and media. It manages the OPZZ staff and their activities.
The OPZZ is recognised as a representative trade union organisation at the national level what results by its full membership in the social dialogue bodies both at the national (Rada Dialogu Społecznego – Council of Social Dialogue) as well as at the regional level (wojewodzkie rady dialogu społecznego). The OPZZ has the right to consult decisions and draft documents related to the employment, social and economic policy. In particular, the OPZZ has an influence on the national budget, levels of the statutory minimum wage and social security contributions.
At the international level, the OPZZ is affiliated to the International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC). At the European level, the OPZZ is affiliated to the European Trade Union Confederation (ETUC) and the ITUC's Pan-European Regional Council (PERC). The OPZZ is involved in activities within the International Labour Organization (ILO) in terms of improvement of the international labour standards. Every year, the OPZZ's representatives take part in International Labour Conferences in Geneva.
The OPZZ is also involved in the regional trade union actions participating in the BASTUN (Baltic Sea Trade Union Network) and the Visegrad Trade Union Group (Czech Rep., Hungary, Poland, Slovakia) meetings.
On the 20th of May 2016, Ukrainians workers with support of the OPZZ created their own trade union. This is the first trade union of migrant workers in Poland and its main aim is to organise and support migrant workers from eastern non-EU countries in their integration within Polish trade unions, labour market and the whole society.
Launch of the trade union responded to a growing need to support workers who are facing exploitation in the Polish labour market by, among others, being victims of social dumping. Ukrainian citizens in Poland are not only precarious workers but predominantly work in workplaces without or with very limited trade union presence, such as construction, agriculture and home care.
Below you can find important information related to work in Poland both in Russian and Ukrainian: