The Coastal Free Trade Unions: Hunger strike in defence of the arrested Błażej Wyszkowski

One of the first initiatives of the WZZ of the Coast was organising a working meeting with the editorial staff of Robotnik (the KSS KOR periodical) on 28 May 1978 in Gdańsk.

The Security Service, however, tried to nip in the bud that new manifestation of anti communist activity. As aresult of the SB investigative operations nine people were detained. The most severely repressed activist was Błażej Wyszkowski, who was brutally beaten up when he stood in defence of Anna Młynik, who was attacked by the functionaries. Wyszkowski was accused of obstructing MO functionaries and just two days later sentenced to two months’ detention. Błażej Wyszkowski’s case united all opposition milieux in the Tri-city. Two declarations signed by WZZ and SKS activists were issued in his defence. On 30 May, during a joint meeting of nearly 30 people from all opposition groups in the Tri-city, a decision was made to start a hunger strike in the flat of Błażej’s brother, Krzysztof. The group of strikers consisted of Krzysztof Wyszkowski and Bogdan Borusewicz in Gdańsk and Józef Śreniowski and other KOR activists in Łódź. But it was the prayers for the arrested man organised in St. Mary’s Basilica by Magdalena Modzelewska, Bożena Rybicka, and Anna Kołakowska and attracting dozens of people, that particularly boosted the opposition’s morale.

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