The Congress of Local and Regional Authorities of the Council of Europe has completed a two-day fact-finding mission regarding the situation of LGBTI people in Poland.
"Sexual orientation has become a polarising issue in Polish society; this is also increasingly reflected in local and regional authorities, some of which have adopted so-called “anti-LGBTI ideology” resolutions and declarations, and family charters" noted the members of the Congress delegation. “We are concerned about the negative impact this situation has on LGBTI people’s lives, rights and safety”, they added.
On 2 and 3 November 2020, the delegation gathered facts and insights from the government, parliamentarians, the ombudsman, local and regional authorities and their associations, and NGOs.
Referring to the European Convention on Human Rights ratified by Poland in 1993, the delegation recalled that Article 14 expressly prohibits discrimination on all grounds and protects everyone including LGBTI people. “Local authorities have a crucial role in upholding citizens' rights as well as promoting dialogue and social cohesion”, they stressed.
A report on the fact-finding mission will be submitted to the Congress and other Council of Europe institutions and the findings will serve for the preparation of a report on "the role and responsibilities of local authorities in the protection of LGBTI people" to be considered by the Congress early 2021.