LETTER FROM A. STELMACHOWSKI TO LECH WALESACITATION SHARE DOWNLOAD
get citationLetter from A. Stelmachowski to Lech Walesa suggesting more open Union structures and advocating a small body of representatives to take part in the Roundtable discussions"Letter from A. Stelmachowski to Lech Walesa" January 20, 1989, History and Public Policy Program Digital Archive, Personal papers of Andrzej Stelmachowski. Translated for CWIHP by Jan Chowaniec. http://digitalarchive.wilsoncenter.org/document/112480
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Mr. Lech Walesa
Chairman of NSZZ
Since I have to stay in Warsaw on Saturday due to the ongoing state-church talks, I am taking this opportunity to convey to you (also for possible use at a KKW 96 meeting) the following suggestions and conclusions:
1. I think that an important matter is to set up a not too large team to work out draft statutes for Solidarity, which would adapt our Union to the law on trade unions. Particularly important is to work out a pattern for workplace organizations, operating with uniform statutes at workplace levels [that] would allow [one] to preserve the unity of the Union. Of course, the drafts should also include higher bodies, including the central one. I think that Lech Kaczynski 97 should be chairman of such team as a professional and also living on the spot in Gdansk.
2. I think it is high time to break away from the secrecy of the Union structure, particularly at workplace levels (except for publishing and financial matters). The Union should create open structures as much as possible.
3. I would also like to express my opinion on an unpopular and personally for you irritating matter. Namely, I think that in view of the chance of Solidarity's legalization an attempt should be made to unite all Solidarity members, who still consider them-selves members of the Union. Thus, I am in favor of the last year's scheme of A. Celinski,98 i.e. to convene a sejmik, at which both members of the National Commission, 99 remaining in the country, as well as members of structures created during the martial law period, and finally representatives of the newly-created structures (strike committees from 1988 and organizing committees, founding committees) should participate. Personally, I think that representatives of the newly-created structures should have at least half of the delegates.
4. I think that the CC resolution on union pluralism 100 provides a basis to undertake the Roundtable talks, but based on our experience from last fall I would advise against a large body. I think a small leading group (a sort of presidium) should be selected, which should participate in the meetings of particular teams with changing composition, depending on the questions under discussion.
5. I am informing [you] that on 17 January there was a hearing in the Main Administrative Court on the Social Foundation for Workers' Solidarity, of which you are a benefactor. The NSA 101 has annulled the decision of the Ministry of Health and Public Welfare, in which the Ministry had demanded unfounded statutory changes. I hope that after that verdict the Ministry will not resist approval of the statute. In the next few days I will resume new efforts in this matter.
With warm greetings,
[signed by A. Stelmachowski]
[Source: A. Stelmachowski Paper.
Translated by Jan Chowaniec for CWIHP.]
96 Krajowa Komisja Wykonawcza [National Executive Commission] - the executive body of NSZZ Solidarity , set up in October 1987.
97 Lech Kaczynski, a lawyer, co-worker of KOR, from 1980 an activist of NSZZ Solidarity , member of KO appointed by the Chairman of NSZZ Solidarity , Roundtable participant, from June 1989 a senator.
98 Andrzej Celinski, KOR member, from 1980 an activist of NSZZ Solidarity , from 1987 secretary of KKW, member of KO appointed by the Chairman of NSZZ Solidarity , Roundtable participant, from June 1989 a senator.
99 Komisja Krajowa (KK) - the top executive body of NSZZ Solidarity set up at the first National Congress of Delegates in December 1981.
100 The CC PUWP Xth plenary meeting adopted a resolution in January 1989, allowing for union pluralism, thus opening up the road for legalization of Solidarity.
101 NSA - Naczelny S d Administracyjny [the Main Administrative Court].
102 The Working Group of the National Commission (GR KK) of NSZZ Solidarity - an opposition group against Lech Walesa and his group of Solidarity leaders and activists from the years 1980-1981. It charged Walesa with undemocratic practices in steering the Union, monopolizing negotiations with the authorities and of being too soft towards the latter.
103 Wladyslaw Findesein, a physics professor, chairman of the Social Council by the Primate of Poland, member of KO appointed by the Chairman of NSZZ Solidarity , Roundtable participant, from June 1989 a senator.
104 An understanding signed between representatives of the striking plants and the authorities in Szczecin on 30 August 1980, in Gdansk on 31 August 1980, and in Jestrzinbie on 3 September 1980.