LGBTIQ activist groups All Out and Poland’s KPH delivered a petition with over 330,000 signatures calling out Poland’s LGBT-free zones to the European Union’s Commissioner for Equality.
Matt Beard from All Out and Marcin Rodzinka from KPH used the meeting to press commissioner Helena Dalli to take action and denounce Poland’s homophobia.
“Hate and violence against LGBT+ people in Poland have reached a boiling point. Polish politicians from the governing party have declared LGBT+ people “enemies of the state” and denounce them as “an ideology”. Around 100 Polish municipalities have declared themselves “LGBT-free zones,” Beard said.
Rodzinka also called for action asking for the EU to act against Poland.
“We are now reaching the point when both the European Commission and the Council must act by immediately triggering infringement procedure and acting under the Article 7(1) TEU procedure. LGBT in Poland still have some hope left and the EU cannot leave them alone. Where the human rights are violated, we need to see a clear opposition and strong action,” Rodzinka said.
Beard thanked Dalli for receiving the petition but also called for immediate action.
“Today, All Out and Polish LGBT+ rights groups Kampania Przeciw Homofobii – KPH (Campaign Against Homophobia) and Lambda Warszawa delivered a petition with a loud and clear demand from 340,000 people to the EU: take action on Poland NOW,” Beard said.
“We would like to thank the EU Commissioner for Equality, Helena Dalli, for receiving our petition today. Commissioner Dalli is listening to the voices of Polish LGBT+ people and to the 340,000 people who stand in solidarity with them, and we deeply appreciate her allyship. We now urge her to do everything within her power to ensure that the EU Commission and EU Council take all possible steps to challenge the LGBT Free Zones in Poland. This is about what our European Union stands for and the time to act is now,” Beard said.
Beard added that the petition showed the solidarity of the global LGBTIQ community with the community in Poland. Over recent years Poland has become increasingly homophobic with the government using the LGBTIQ community to divide the community saying they represent a threat to the country’s values. As a result there have been more homophobic attacks and entire cities declaring themselves “LGBT-free zones”.
The video below shows an All Out EU building projection highlighting the plight of the Polish LGBTIQ community.