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Author: Anna Baranowska

269 TEN TenPoland Anna Baranowska Over the past two decades, Poland has experienced pronounced economic and institutional changes. The transition to a market economy started in 1990 with radical and comprehensive reforms aimed at eliminating detailed state intervention in both labour and product markets (Balcerowicz, 1994). The reform strategy dealt not only with the type of measures, but also with their phasing – they were all launched simultaneously and proceeded at a high rate in what has been referred to as ‘shock therapy’. In the literature on

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Author: Anne White

197 TEN Return to Poland You can, you can definitely return to Poland!... If someone has gone abroad, they can come back any time. (Emilia, north-east Poland) They are forever ‘just on their way back’, but they never manage to return! (Lidia, Wielkopolska, on friends living with children in Germany) This book explores factors which help determine Polish families’ decisions about how long to stay in the UK, and therefore, by implication, whether and when to return to Poland. Chapters Eight and Nine discussed some of the reasons why such families had

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99 SIx Poland: redefining social policies Irena Wóycicka and Maciej Grabowski Defining Poland’s official position towards european social policy initiatives is difficult, because as a result of parliamentary elections in the autumn of 2005 the right-wing Law and Justice Party took power and announced a radical political transformation. The former left-wing liberal government declared support for modernising the european social model (eSM), focusing on employability and vocational activation. Instead, the present ruling elite seem to emphasise the need to

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105 SIX Disabled people and employment in Poland Monika Struck-Peregończyk Introduction The Republic of Poland is a Central European country with a population of 38.5 million people. It is estimated that between 12.2% and 21.5% of the Polish population can be considered as disabled. The lower figure comes from the last National Census carried out in 2011 (CSO, 2013a, p 24), which defines a disabled person as ‘a person who has an appropriate disability certificate or a person who does not have such a certificate but has a limited ability to perform basic

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Author: Anne White

27 TWO Post-communist Poland: social change and migration This chapter provides some background information about Poland as a whole, giving the context for the more detailed examination of livelihoods in specific Polish locations that follows in Chapters Three to Seven. The term ‘post- communist’ is used, the adjective preferred by political scientists, in preference to ‘post-socialist’, a label used by some sociologists and anthropologists. The Polish political system from 1944-89 was far from ‘socialist’, as social democrats understand the term

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173 EIGHT Older volunteers in Poland: the heritage of a Socialist regime Konrad Turek and Jolanta Perek-Białas Introduction After 1989, Poland transitioned from a centrally planned economy (controlled and monitored by the state) to an economy with a substantial share of the private sector, before eventually becoming a member of the European Union (EU) in 2004. In line with other post-Socialist welfare states, Poland aimed its welfare regime system in the direction of a liberal-residual regime type, even though a clear type of welfare regime had not been

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137 NINE Community development: (un) fulfilled hopes for social equality in Poland Anna Bilon, Ewa Kurantowicz and Monika Noworolnik-Mastalska Introduction Economists and researchers of social life in Poland have only recently started to analyse the social consequences of the 1989 political shift in terms of wealth distribution and social divisions in particular. In the immediate aftermath of the ‘breakthrough’, as it has become known, optimism (generally speaking) rocketed to unprecedented levels and faith in impending favourable social change

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127 EIGHT Labour market activation and empowerment of the homeless in Poland Aldona Wiktorska-Święcka and Dorota Moroń Introduction The subject of this chapter is ‘Assistance from A to Z: Professional Activation of Homeless People from Wroclaw Circle St. Brother Albert Aid Society’, hereafter referred to as ‘Assistance from A to Z’. It applies to a specific group of people at risk of exclusion – the homeless – and is an investment in their activation for the labour market and social empowerment. ‘Assistance from A to Z’ was implemented between 2012 and

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147 TEN The professional development of social work in Poland after 1989 Sabina Pawlas-Czyz, Lars Evertsson and Marek Perlinski Introduction In modern European welfare states, professionals like nurses, physicians and social workers have a prominent role as they provide social and medical care and services to citizens. However, their practice is not always for the good of the client. They may also serve as gatekeepers in the sense that they restrict citizens’ access to welfare services, and it is their mandate to monitor, educate and discipline citizens

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203 TEN Teenage pregnancy in Poland: between laissez-faire and religious backlash Stéphane Portet1 Introduction In Poland, teenage pregnancy seems invisible. Only a few newspaper articles mention this issue and there is neither political discussion nor a real action plan concerning early motherhood. However, even if the number of teenage pregnancies tends be small, this phenomenon remains significant. Although teenage pregnancy is not publicly discussed, by contrast issues such as sexual and reproductive rights, especially abortion and sex education, are at the

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