Civic Platform (PO) leader Donald Tusk, has revealed two legislative plans to support the LGBTQ+ community in Poland.
Speaking In the northwest town of Pia, Tusk made the announcement in response to a high school senior question highlighting the discrimination faced by the LGBTQ+ community under the current administration.
The ruling Law and Justice (PiS) party has been openly critical of the LGBTQ+ community, spearheading a campaign against what they label as “LGBT ideology.” In recent years, nearly a third of the country declared themselves “LGBT-free” zones, leading to Poland being ranked as the most challenging EU nation for LGBTQ+ individuals for four consecutive years.
Addressing the student’s concern, Tusk emphasised the need to foster respect and understanding. He described the LGBTQ+ community as a “marginalised minority” and championed the idea that “Love deserves our respect.”
Tusk’s proposed bills will overhaul the current convoluted process for trans individuals seeking legal gender recognition. Under the present system, trans individuals must litigate against their parents to alter their legally recognised gender due to the absence of clear gender recognition legislation.
Reflecting on the past, Tusk recalled how a 2015 gender recognition bill, initiated during PO’s governance, was rejected by conservative president Andrzej Duda, a supporter of PiS.
Further, Tusk confirmed plans to introduce legal civil partnerships for same-sex couples. While recognising it doesn’t equate to full marriage rights, he highlighted the significant legal protections it would offer couples.
Concluding, Tusk expressed his urgency in pushing these reforms, hoping for a future where the streets aren’t filled with decades of protests.