The head of the government together with the participants of the protests, trade unionists and representatives of the authorities participated in the Gala of the 40th anniversary of Lublin 1980 July events. Previously, the Prime Minister attended a solemn Holy Mass, which was held in the Lublin Cathedral. He also laid flowers under the Cross of Gratitude in Lublin.
Every era has its time. The Solidarity era began with two major events - the visit of John Paul II to Poland in 1979 and the events which took place in the Lublin region. Without Lublin July, there would have been no Polish August afterwards, there would have been no Solidarity the Prime Minister stated.
As the head of the government noted, in July 1980, the birth of the real Poland of Lublin - independent, free and solidary - took place. He reminded that due to these strikes, the planned official celebrations of announcing the Manifesto of the Polish Committee of National Liberation on 22 July were not held, and Poles were not afraid to follow the path towards freedom.
He emphasised that today's anniversary is a grand celebration of independence and solidarity and the triumph of those who had the courage to oppose oppressive power and fight for their rights.
July 1980 in the Lublin region
When 40 years ago the wave of protests flooded the Lublin region, nobody expected that they would spread over the whole country. More than 50 thousand workers and other employees in the region went on strike. Under the pressure of the protesting workers, both the railway, public transport and other municipal services, the then authorities had to yield and enter into negotiations with the protesters.
Strikes in Świdnik, Lublin and the region
On 8 July, in Świdnik, and later in other plants in the Lublin region, the workers went on strike - not only against the increasing prices. The Poles bravely made their demands for, among others, improvement of working conditions, pay rises and demands for independence. Thanks to the solidarity and steadfastness of the protesters - initially in Świdnik Transport Equipment Factory, later in Lublin and the whole region - there was a chance to overcome the resistance of the communist authorities.
Polish August 1980 began in July
The bloodless events of July 1980 preceded the subsequent strikes in the Gdańsk Shipyard and on the Coast, they paved the way for the establishment of the Independent Self-Governing Trade Union
Solidarity. These events brought about great political changes in Poland.