Tell Polish authorities to stop intimidating LGBT activists and treating them like criminals!
A campaign of hatred towards sexual minorities has been going on Poland for a long time. Inspired and fueled by the Catholic Church and the ruling party, and largely ignored by most opposition parties. At present over 30% of Poland's territory is calling itself as "LGBT-free" by bills of local municipalities and counties. During the recent presidential campaign this year the topic of Queer people was exceptionally high profile - we were called "ideology" and our very humanity was repeatedly questioned.
In response to recent events the collective “Stop Bzdurom” (“Stop Nonsense”), formed a year ago to react by performative actions in public space, took action. During the night on July 28 put rainbow flags on various monuments in Warsaw. This unharmful happening has sparked outrage in politicians. The Deputy Minister of Justice Sebastian Kaleta reported the matter to the prosecutor’s office as an insult to religious feelings and disrespecting of a monument.
On August 3, one of the “Stop Bzdurom” activists - Margot - was stopped by the police in the street, handcuffed and put into an unmarked police car. On August 4 another activist — Łania — was tracked down and forcefully transferred her to a police station. All this because they hung rainbow flags on monuments.
The activists were detained for 48 hours - measures vastly disproportionate to the situation. They were not questioned for the whole day, even though they were ready to provide explanations and had legal help. No action was taken throughout the day, which suggests it is one more form of repression to intimidate the LGBT activists.
We need your solidarity. We need you to spread the word and talk about the situation of sexual minorities and feminist activists in Poland. As the repression escalates, we have fewer and fewer allies in our country.
Tell the polish Ministry of Interior and Administration responsible for the police and the Ministry of Justice responsible for the prosecutor's office to stop this madness!
On Friday, August 7, the police force in Warsaw brutally arrested 50 people who were protesting against the detention of Margot, a young LGBT activist. Many have heard the order given to the police force to "catch three random people". Among the detained were people with rainbow bags, passengers waiting for the tube as well as a tourist and people who just went grocery shopping. Police officers were brutally pushing, beating, and suffocating young people, ignoring media workers and Parliament Members who arrived to protect the protesters. Those who were detained have been taken to police stations across Warsaw and adjacent cities. They have been held many long hours without contact to their relatives and lawyers. Some were given no food or water.
There is even an account of a trans woman being repeatedly searched by several policemen who put their hands in her underwear. This is rape.