Poland region repeals ‘anti-LGBT ideology’ resolution
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Poland region repeals ‘anti-LGBT ideology’ resolution

The Polish region of Swietokrzyskie repealed its “anti-LGBT ideology” resolution Wednesday—one of several anti-LGBT resolutions passed in dozens of Polish regions in 2019. The resolution was a symbolic statement by Swietokrzyskie, which had sought to establish itself as an “LGBT-free zone,” clarifying its ideological stance against the LGBT community and symbolizing how LGBT persons were unwelcome in their territory.

Earlier this month, the European Commission had sent formal notices to five Polish regions that had adopted such resolutions, asking for response on the notices and suspending talks about the disbursement of funds under the REACT-EU program, should these resolutions continue to be in place. The Wednesday decision to repeal comes in response to threats of losing funding from the European Commission, which had observed such resolutions to be discriminatory against LGBT persons.

Such resolutions have been argued by Polish regions to be in the interest of family rights and promotion of union between a man and a woman. However, the newly adopted Wednesday resolution in Swietokrzyskie withdraws its anti-LGBT ideology stance and pledge to “respect the centuries old tradition and culture of the Republic of Poland as well as equality and fair treatment.” This makes Swietokrzyskie the first Polish region to withdraw its “anti-LGBT ideology” resolution.

Spokesperson for the European Commission Christian Wigand commented on the development:

We are closely following the latest developments related to the so-called LGBT-free zones in Poland. We see a move in the right direction and expect other regions to move in the same direction. The Commission has a clear position on such resolutions and zones. Let me recall the words of President [Ursula] von der Leyen [that] LGBTQI-free zones are zones free from humanity and there is no place for them in our Union.

It is expected that around PLN 47.5 billion worth of funds under the REACT-EU program will remain suspended in case such resolutions continue in other regions.