Polish unions inch forward
Warsaw — The district court here has registered staff members of the Polish LOT airline as the country's first legally established independent trade union. The move was welcomed by the chairman of the tribunal registering new unions; he said the organizations would have a strong role to play in revitalizing Polish society. Another official said 20 requests for legal registra tion had been received, including that of Solidarnosc (Solidarity), the main labor organization, representing thousands of plants.
The government asked the unions to call off a threatened one-hour strike Friday, promising a shake-up in leadership to make the government more responsive to worker demands. The appeal came as authorities, breaking 10 years of official silence, released a newsreel showing the 1970 riots in which troops fired on striking workers in Gdansk.
Workers planned the stoppage because of the government's failure to pay promised wage increases and official harassment of the independent union movement. They pledge a general strike Oct. 20 if Friday's action does not the prod the government into meeting their demands.