Jakub Tarasewicz staged a several-day-long demonstration to draw attention to the underfunding of healthcare. The protest was unusual and aimed to highlight the need for increased funding in the healthcare sector.
From Saturday, 13 January, to Monday, 15 January, people walking along Krakowskie Przedmieście may have been surprised to see a man lying on a bed in the middle of the pavement. The protester was Jakub Tarasewicz, a 24-year-old resident of Zgorzelec, trying to draw attention to the healthcare issues in Poland with his act.
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Beds: not only used for resting
Jakub Tarasewicz used a bed as the centrepiece of his protest, attaching a poster explaining his action. The poster read: "‘Blue Monday’. Hi, my name is Kuba, and I’m 24 years old. I’ve been battling depression, neurosis, and anxiety all my life. I will be spending my time here from January 13th to January 15th in bed at 3:00 PM. The happening, which I’ve named ‘Blue Monday’, is a form of therapy for me. Through this protest, I hope to draw attention to the underfunding of healthcare in our beautiful country. The bed is symbolic of my struggles with mental health, and I believe that new leadership can bring about positive change.
Jakub Tarasewicz initially planned to set up a fundraiser but later changed his mind and recommended that those interested spend the funds on therapy for themselves or someone who needs it. In a video shared online, Jakub expressed his surprise at the amount of support he has received and the number of people who have shared their mental health problems and difficulties in finding support.
"A lot of people came to me and confided about their problems, telling me about their battle with depression, problems with the National Health Service, and how they have struggled. Waiting time for an appointment is often more than six months. I hope that this happening will bring us at least one step closer to a better tomorrow," says Kuba Tarasewicz in the video.
Opinions are divided
Many internet users are supporting Jakub Tarasewicz's action on X. However, others do not believe that such incidents are necessary. Some of the opponents claim that the current state of psychiatry and psychology in Poland is the result of the actions taken by Prime Minister Donald Tusk.