This article is in the category Category:Gender-related violence, but no reliable sources are cited to verify its inclusion. (September 2019) (Learn how and when to remove this template message)
An LGBT-free zone (Polish : Strefa wolna od LGBT ) is an act by a Polish municipality, powiat (county), or voivodeship (province) declaring their respective regions as free of "LGBT ideology".
Polish is a West Slavic language of the Lechitic group. It is spoken primarily in Poland and serves as the native language of the Poles. In addition to being an official language of Poland, it is also used by Polish minorities in other countries. There are over 50 million Polish-language speakers around the world and it is one of the official languages of the European Union.
A powiat is the second-level unit of local government and administration in Poland, equivalent to a county, district or prefecture in other countries. The term "powiat" is most often translated into English as "county" or "district".
A voivodeship is the area administered by a voivode (Governor) in several countries of central and eastern Europe. Voivodeships have existed since medieval times in Bulgaria, Poland, Hungary, Lithuania, Latvia, Ukraine, Russia and Serbia. The area of extent of voivodeship resembles that of a duchy in western medieval states, much as the title of voivode was equivalent to that of a duke. Other roughly equivalent titles and areas in medieval Eastern Europe included ban and banate.
While unenforceable and considered primarily symbolic, activists say the declared zones represent an attempt to stigmatize and exclude members of the LGBT community.As of August 2019, around 30 different LGBT-free zone declarations have been made in Poland, including four voivodeships in the south-east of the country: Lesser Poland, Podkarpackie, Świętokrzyskie, and Lublin.
Lesser Poland Voivodeship or Lesser Poland Province, also known as Małopolska Voivodeship or Małopolska Province, is a voivodeship (province), in southern Poland. It has an area of 15,108 square kilometres (5,833 sq mi), and a population of 3,267,731 (2006).
Podkarpackie Voivodeship or Podkarpackie Province, also known as Subcarpathian Voivodeship or Subcarpathia Province, is a voivodeship, or province, in extreme-southeastern Poland. Its administrative capital and largest city is Rzeszów. Along with the Marshall, it is governed by the Subcarpathian Regional Assembly. Historically, most of the province's territory was part of the Kingdom of Galicia–Volhynia, the Kingdom of Galicia and Lodomeria and the Ruthenian Voivodeship. In the interwar period, it was part of the Lwów Voivodeship.
Świętokrzyskie Voivodeship, Świętokrzyskie Province, or Holy Cross Province is one of the 16 voivodeships (provinces) into which Poland is divided. It is situated in southeastern Poland, in the historical province of Lesser Poland, and takes its name from the Świętokrzyskie mountain range. Its capital and largest city is Kielce.
In February 2019, Warsaw's liberal mayor Rafał Trzaskowski signed a declaration supporting LGBTQ rightsand announced his intention to follow World Health Organization guidelines and integrate LGBT issues into the Warsaw school sex education curricula. PiS politicians objected to the sex education program saying it would sexualize children. PiS party leader Jarosław Kaczyński responded to the declaration, calling LGBT rights "an import" that threatened Poland. The declaration "enraged and galvanized" conservative politicians and conservative media in Poland, according to The Daily Telegraph . The LGBT-free zone declarations are considered to be a reaction to the Warsaw declaration.
Rafał Trzaskowski is a Polish politician and the current Mayor of Warsaw. He is also a political scientist specializing in European studies. He served as a Member of the European Parliament (2009-2014), Minister of Administration and Digitization (2013-2014) as well as the Secretary of State in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Poland (2014-2015). He was elected a Member of the Polish Parliament in 2015. In the 2018 Polish local elections he was elected Mayor of Warsaw.
The World Health Organization (WHO) is a specialized agency of the United Nations that is concerned with international public health. It was established on 7 April 1948, and is headquartered in Geneva, Switzerland. The WHO is a member of the United Nations Development Group. Its predecessor, the Health Organization, was an agency of the League of Nations.
Law and Justice is a national-conservative, Christian democratic and right-wing populist political party in Poland that is composed with right-wing to far-right members. With 221 seats in the Sejm and 66 in the Senate, it is currently the largest party in the Polish parliament.
According to The Daily Telegraph, the conservative establishment is fearful of a liberal transition that may erode the power of the Catholic Church in Poland in a manner similar to the transition around the Irish Church.Decreasing Church attendance, rising secularization, and sexual abuse scandals have put pressure on the conservative position. In May 2019, Polish police arrested civil-rights activist Elżbieta Podleśna for putting up posters of the Black Madonna of Częstochowa with the halo painted rainbow colors for the charge of offending religious sentiment, which is illegal in Poland. Also in May, two weeks prior to the 2019 European Parliament election, a documentary on child sex abuse in the Church, was released online. The documentary was expected to hurt the Church-aligned PiS electorally, which led PiS leader Kaczyński to speak heatedly of the Polish nation and children as being under attack by deviant foreign ideas, which led conservative voters to rally around PiS. According to feminist scholar Agnieszka Graff, "The attack on LGBT was triggered by the [Warsaw] Declaration, but that was just a welcome excuse", as PiS sought to woo the rural-traditional demographic and needed a scapegoat to replace migrants.
The Daily Telegraph, known online as The Telegraph, is a national British daily broadsheet newspaper published in London by Telegraph Media Group and distributed across the United Kingdom and internationally. It was founded by Arthur B. Sleigh in 1855 as Daily Telegraph & Courier.
There are 41 Catholic dioceses of the Latin Church and two eparchies of the Eastern Churches in Poland. These comprise about 10,000 parishes and religious orders. There are 33 million Catholics. The primate of the Church is Wojciech Polak, Archbishop of Gniezno. According to 2014 statistical yearbook, 85.8% of Poland's population is Catholic.
The Catholic Church in Ireland is part of the worldwide Catholic Church in communion with the Holy See. With 3.7 million members, it is the largest Christian church in Ireland. In the Republic of Ireland's 2016 census, 78% of the population identified as Catholic, which represents a decrease of 6% from 2011. By contrast, 45% of Northern Ireland identified as Catholic at the 2011 census, a percentage that is expected to increase in the coming years. The Primate of All Ireland is the Archbishop of Armagh. The church is administered on an all-Ireland basis. The Irish Catholic Bishops' Conference is a consultative body for ordinaries in Ireland.
In August 2019, the Archbishop of Kraków Marek Jędraszewski said LGBT people were like a "rainbow plague" in a sermon commemorating the Warsaw uprising.Not long after, a drag queen simulated his murder on stage.
The Archbishop of Kraków is the head of the archdiocese of Kraków. A bishop of Kraków first came into existence when the diocese was created in 1000; it was promoted to an archdiocese on 28 October 1925. Due to Kraków's role as Poland's political, cultural and spiritual center, the bishops and archbishops of Kraków were often very influential in the city, country and abroad. From 1443 to 1791, bishops of Kraków were simultaneously Dukes of Siewierz, although it was only Adam Stefan Sapieha who officially abandoned the title.
Marek Jędraszewski is a Polish Roman Catholic prelate who has been Archbishop of Kraków since 8 December 2016. He served as the Archbishop of Łódź from 2012 to 2017. He has also been Vice-President of the Polish Episcopal Conference since 2014.
As of 2019, being openly gay in Poland's small towns and rural areas "[takes] increasing physical and mental fortitude" due to the efforts of Polish authorities and the Catholic Church, according to The Telegraph.Public perceptions, however, have been becoming more tolerant of gays. In 2001, 41 percent of Poles surveyed stated that "being gay wasn’t normal and shouldn’t be tolerated" whereas 24 percent said so in 2017, 5 percent said "being gay was normal" in 2001 while 16 percent said so in 2017.
Throughout history, rural spaces have held multiple meanings and served various functions for queer individuals and communities, ranging from sites for political organizing or sanctuary to sites of repression and violence for LGBTQIA+ individuals.
LGBT-free zone motions are made by Polish municipalities,powiats (counties), and voivodeships (provinces) who declare the regions under their control as free of "LGBT ideology" in reaction to the declaration. While unenforceable, activists say the declared zones represent attempts to exclude the LGBT community. Activist Olga Kaczorek called the declarations "a statement saying that a specific kind of people is not welcome there."
In March 2019, the town of Świdnik in eastern Poland passed a resolution rejecting "LGBT ideology".
As of August 2019, around 30 different LGBT-free zones have been declared in Poland, including four voivodeships in the south-east of the country:Lesser Poland, Podkarpackie, Świętokrzyskie, and Lublin. The four Voivodeships form the "historically conservative" part of Poland.
Powiats adopting such measures include: Białystok County, Jarosław County, Lesko County, Lubaczów County, Mielec County, Puławy County, Ryki County, Świdnik County, Tarnów County, and Zamość County.
Ahead of the 2015 Polish parliamentary election, the ruling Law and Justice (PiS) party took an anti-migrant stance.With migration slowing significantly, in the run-up to the 2019 Polish parliamentary election the party has focused on countering Western "LGBT ideology". PiS leader Jarosław Kaczyński labelled migrants as "parasites and protozoa" in 2015, while in 2019 he rebuked the Warsaw mayor's pro-LGBTQ declaration as "an attack on the family and children" and stated that LGBTQ was an "imported" ideology.
After Archbishop Jędraszewski made his speech calling "LGBT ideology" a "rainbow plague", the Polish minister for aid defended the comments.
Justice Minister Zbigniew Ziobro ordered an investigation of Ikea after it fired an employee who expressed homophobic sentiments, which according to TheWashington Post, "[kept] the conflict in the news".
The conservative Gazeta Polska newspaper issued "LGBT-free zone" stickers to readers.The Polish opposition and diplomats, including US ambassador to Poland Georgette Mosbacher, condemned the stickers. Gazeta editor in chief Tomasz Sakiewicz replied to the criticism with: "what is happening is the best evidence that LGBT is a totalitarian ideology".
The Warsaw district court ordered that distribution of the stickers should halt pending the resolution of a court case. 's editor dismissed the ruling saying it was "fake news" and censorship, and that the paper would continue distributing the stickers. Gazeta continued distribution of the stickers, but modified the decal to read "LGBT Ideology-Free Zone".However Gazeta
In July Polish media chain Empik, the country's largest, refused to stock Gazeta Polska after it issued the stickers.In August 2019, a show organized by the Gazeta Polska Community of America scheduled for October 24 in Carnegie Hall in New York was cancelled after complaints of anti-LGBT ties led to artists pulling out of the show.
In Rzeszów, after LGBT activists submitted a request to hold a pride march, PiS councilors drafted a resolution to make Rzeszów an LGBT-free zone as well as outlaw the event itself.Some 29 requests for counter-demonstrations reached city hall, which led mayor Tadeusz Ferenc, of the opposition Democratic Left Alliance, to ban the march due to security concerns. The ban was then overturned by a court ruling. PiS councilors put forward a resolution outlawing "LGBT ideology", which was defeated by two votes.
Following the violent events in the first Białystok equality march : Strefa wolna od stref). In Szczecin a demonstration under the slogan of "hate-free zone" (Polish : Strefa wolna od nienawiści) took place, and in Łódź left-wing politicians handed out "hate-free zone" stickers.and the Gazeta Polska stickers a demonstration for tolerance was held in Gdańsk on 23 July 2019, with the slogan "zone free of zones" (Polish
Bożena Bieryło, a PiS councilwoman in Białystok County, said the legislation in Białystok county was required due to LGBT "provocations" and "demands" for sex education instruction.
The national PiS party has encouraged the local declarations, with a PiS official handing out medals in Lublin to local politicians who supported the declarations.
In July 2019, Polish Ombudsman Adam Bodnar stated that "the government is increasing homophobic sentiments" with remarks "on the margins of hate speech".Bodnar said he is preparing an appeal to the administrative court against the declarations, as according to Bodnar they are not only political but also have a normative character that affects the lives of people in the declared region.
In July 2019, Warsaw city Councillor Marek Szolc and the Polish Society for Anti-Discrimination Law(PTPA) released a legal opinion stating that LGBT-free zone declarations stigmatize and exclude people and are illegal as they violate article 32 of the Constitution of Poland which guarantees equality and lack of discrimination.
In August 2019, multiple LGBT community members have stated that they feel unsafe in Poland.
The Razem party stated: "Remember how the right [were scared] of the so-called [Muslim] no-go zones? Thanks to the same right, we have our own no-go zones."
Liberal politicians and media and human rights activists have compared the declarations to Nazi-era declarations of areas being judenfrei (free of Jews). Left-leaning Italian newspaper la Repubblica called it "a concept that evokes the term 'Judenfrei'".Campaign Against Homophobia director Slava Melnyk compared the declarations to "1933, when there were also free zones from a specific group of people." Warsaw's deputy president Paweł Rabiej tweeted, "The German fascists created zones free of Jews. Apartheid, of blacks."
Civic Platform is a liberal-conservative political party in Poland. Civic Platform came to power following the 2007 general election as the major coalition partner in Poland's government, with party leader Donald Tusk as Prime Minister of Poland. Tusk was re-elected as Prime Minister in the 2011 general election but stepped down three years later to assume the post of President of the European Council. Prime Minister Ewa Kopacz led the party in the 2015 general election but was defeated by the Law and Justice party. On 16 November 2015 Civic Platform government stepped down after exactly 8 years in power. In 2010 Civic Platform candidate Bronisław Komorowski was elected as President of Poland, but failed in running for re-election in 2015. PO is the second largest party in the Sejm, with 138 seats, and the Senate, with 33 seats. Civic Platform is a member of the European People's Party (EPP).
Lublin Voivodeship, or Lublin region, is a voivodeship, or region, located in southeastern Poland. It was created on January 1, 1999, out of the former Lublin, Chełm, Zamość, Biała Podlaska and (partially) Tarnobrzeg and Siedlce Voivodeships, pursuant to Polish local government reforms adopted in 1998. The region is named after its largest city and regional capital, Lublin, and its territory is made of four historical lands: the western part of the voivodeship, with Lublin itself, belongs to Lesser Poland, the eastern part of Lublin Area belongs to Red Ruthenia, and the northeast belongs to Polesie and Podlasie.
Jarosław Aleksander Kaczyński is a Polish politician and lawyer, and the current leader of the Law and Justice party, which he co-founded in 2001 with his identical twin brother, the late Polish President Lech Kaczyński. Running for PiS, he served as Prime Minister of Poland from July 2006 to November 2007, while his brother was President of Poland. After PiS's electoral defeat in 2007, Kaczyński was the main leader of the opposition to Civic Platform's governments.
Lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) people in Poland face legal challenges not faced by non-LGBT residents. Both male and female same-sex sexual activity are legal in Poland. This was formally codified in 1932, and Poland introduced an equal age of consent for homosexuals and heterosexuals, which was set at 15. Poland provides LGBT people with the same rights as heterosexuals in certain areas: gay and bisexual men are allowed to donate blood, gays and bisexuals are allowed to serve openly in the Polish Armed Forces, and transgender people are allowed to change their legal gender following certain requirements including undergoing hormone replacement therapy. Polish law bans employment discrimination based on sexual orientation. No protections for education, health services, hate crimes and hate speech exist, however. In 2018, the Supreme Court ruled that it is illegal to deny goods and services on the basis of sexual orientation. However, this judgement was overturned on appeal.
Julian Stryjkowski was a Polish journalist and writer, notable for his social prose of radical leftist leanings. He was considered one of the best Polish-Jewish writers of the communist era.
Gazeta Polska is a Polish language right-wing to far-right weekly news magazine published in Poland.
Poland A and B refers to the historical, political and cultural distinction between the western and the eastern part of the country, with Poland "A", west of the Vistula, being much more developed and having faster growth than Poland "B", east of the river. The General Secretary of Krajowa Izba Gospodarcza Marek Kłoczko, said in his 2007 interview that the divisions are more spread out and forming three separate categories, Poland "A" is the metropolitan cities, Poland "B" is the rest of the country, and Poland "C" is the plains and the landscape parks east of the Vistula, which require a different treatment.
Adam Ignacy Koc was a Polish politician, MP, soldier, journalist and Freemason. Koc, who had several noms de guerre, fought in Polish units in World War One and in the Polish-Soviet War.
Poland Comes First, also rendered as Poland is the Most Important, and abbreviated to PJN, was a centre-right, conservative liberal, political party in Poland. It was formed as a more moderate breakaway group from Law and Justice (PiS). By early 2011, the party had eighteen members of the Sejm, one member of the Senate, and three members of the European Parliament. Poland Comes First ceased to exist as a political party in December 2013, when it joined the new centre-right party led by Jarosław Gowin named Poland Together.
United Poland is a right-wing, Catholic-nationalist political party in Poland. It is allied with Law and Justice (PiS), as part of United Right currently ruling in Poland.
Irena Jurgielewiczowa was a Polish teacher and writer of children's literature and young adult literature. During World War II she was an underground teacher, member of Armia Krajowa, and participant of the Warsaw Uprising. After the war she was a lecturer at the University of Warsaw.
Since the creation of the Polish state and its Christianization there have never been any Polish laws, not counting periods of occupation, that persecute LGBT people. Homosexuality has been a taboo subject for most of Poland's history, however, and this and the lack of legal discrimination often led to a lack of historical sources around the subject. Homophobia has been a common public attitude in Poland, thanks to the influence of Catholic Church in Polish public life, and the widespread conservatism of Polish society. Homosexuality in Poland was decriminalized in 1932.
Parada Równości is an LGBT community pride parade held in Warsaw since 2001, usually in May or June. It has attracted at least several thousand attendees each year; 20,000 attendees were reported in 2006, following an official ban in 2004 and 2005.
National Movement, abbreviated to RN, is a political party, first formed as an electoral alliance of far-right and right-wing populist political movements in Poland, which have signed an ideological agreement, including the neo-fascist National Radical Camp and the All-Polish Youth, and the conservative-liberal Real Politics Union, the only political party taking part in the agreement. The party was formed after the Polish Independence March in 2012.
All Out is a global not-for-profit organisation that is focused on political advocacy for the human rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people. Founded in 2012, All Out aims to bring the power of people beyond geographical barriers to express their solidarity and be a positive force on the side of LGBT people.
This is a list of notable events in the history of LGBT rights that took place in the year 2019.
Elżbieta Podleśna is a Polish psychotherapist and civil rights activist.
The first Bialystok equality march took place on 20 July 2019 in Białystok. Approximately a thousand pride marchers were opposed by thousands of members of far-right groups, ultra football fans, and others who violently attacked the marchers. Following the attack, solidarity events were held in Poland.
While conservative social media users cheered the move on Twitter and on Facebook, many liberal Poles connected the effort to create "LGBT-free" zones to Nazi efforts to create zones free of Jews.