Teachers and other school workers have been on strike across Poland since 8 April in a determined effort to tackle low pay in the education sector.
EPSU has sent a message of solidarity to the education union which is leading the strike. The union says that a three-year-long campaign of demonstrations and protests has failed to get the government to move on pay in schools and with no solution following several weeks of negotiations, an all-out strike was the last resort. New teachers are paid as little as PLN 1751 (EUR 410) net and other school staff have similarly been suffering on low pay and lengthy pay freezes. The average starting wage for teachers is lower than many jobs that require less training.
In the lead up to the strike, a ballot of workers showed 80%-90% support among teachers, childcare staff and other workers in administration and services in schools.
The strike comes at a time when other public service workers are pushing for higher pay. Workers in the justice sector as well as physiotherapists and psychotherapists have taken action while there are pay claims being pursued by non-medical professions and other healthcare workers as well as staff in public administration and culture.