New anti-propaganda law in Poland may harm LGBTQI-students


A new law affecting schools would give the Polish government even more control of Polish schools. January 13 the Polish parliament voted for a law which has been inspired by the Hungarian anti-propaganda law. This new law would make it possible for school inspectors to censor educational material from civil society, and it would also make it possible to fire principals who don't confirm to the new rules.

The Polish education minister Przemysław Czarnek has been the driving force behind the new law. He has been criticised for several controversial and LGBTQI-phobic statements. For example, he has compared the LGBTQI-movement to Nazism and claimed that these groups share common roots.

Over the last few years, the rights of LGBTQI-people in Poland have been severely restricted, from anti-abortion laws to so-called LGBTQI-free zones which RFSL has criticised before.  The tougher climate has had a negative effect on LGBTQI-people’s health. New research from 2021 shows that there has been an increase in suicidal thoughts among LGBTQI-people in Poland (55 % in 2021, compared to 45 % in 2017 and 38 % in 2012).

Sweden and the EU must continue to stand against this negative trend in Poland since this has proved to be effective. After the European Commission threatened to withdraw funding, several Polish regions stopped declaring themselves LGBTQI-free zones.  The EU and its member states must take a stand for human rights.