Poles in UK strike, donate blood

Polish migrants in UK go on strike, donate blood to protest discrimination and show their contribution to society

Photo by: Facebook
Photo by: Facebook

Updated Aug 22, 2015

Polish migrants in the UK made two different calls to their people to challenge the attitudes of British towards them, going for a strike and donating blood on Thursday.

The call for a strike came from the Polish Express, the free newspaper for Poles living in the UK.

Tomasz Kowalski, the editor of the newspaper said that there is “something wrong” between Poles and British, blaming the view fed by some politicians and newspapers that migrants simply want benefit payments from the state, according to Anadolu Agency.

“Strajk imigrantów w UK [the immigrants strike]," a Facebook page that was created for the call of blood donations and a t-shirt with the slogan, “enough! Stop blaming us” has been designed.

However, not all Poles agreed to go on a strike and an alternative campaign emerged to remind Britons of Poles who fought for the British forces during the Second World War, with the hashtag #polishblood.

George Byczynski from the British-Poles Initiative started the campaign and gained more support than the call for strike.

“This is about demonstrating our contribution to this country. Some Polish people discussed a strike, but I wanted to do something more positive” he said.


Officially there are 680,000 Poles living in the UK, making them one of the largest migrant groups in the country.

An investigation by the University College London last year, European migrants in the UK paid out £20 billion more in taxes than they received in social benefits between 2000 and 2011, Anadolu Agency reported.


TRTWorld and agencies