Three regional councils in Poland have repealed their motions that had previously declared their regions as “LGBT-free zones.”
The shift comes after the European Union had threatened to stop and withdraw funding to the provinces that had passed such motions in recent years, Reuters reported.
In 2019, around 100 municipal bodies in Poland were able to go along with the support of the right-wing Law and Justice Party and the Catholic church to pass such motions. Now, however, the E.U. says it’s a violation of E.U. law.
The E.U. wrote to five regional councils earlier this month, according to Reuters. The block called on the councils to reverse their motions if they still wanted to receive E.U. funding.
The motions had no actionable aspect to them, but were symbolic gestures espousing the council’s conservative and traditional values — in opposition to what some have referred to as “LGBT ideology.”
Quoting the Polish state news agency, Reuters reported that the southern provinces of Malopolskie, Lubelskie, and Podkarpackie provinces voted to rescind the motion. Swietokrzyskie did so last week.
Malopolskie’s regional chair said in a statement that local development needed to be “financially secured.”
“Neither I nor any councilor on the right or the left was ready to take responsibility for leaving Malopolskie without these E.U. funds,” he said. “It is a consensus that not every party is entirely satisfied with.”
“It was only our voice about the importance and value of the family that caused the creation of just such a declaration [against LGBT people],” he added. “Malopolskie is a strong region, built on values and based on centuries-old Christian tradition.”
The resolution in Podkarpackie that passed was named “Podkarpackie as a region of well-established tolerance.” In Lubelskie, the motion to rescind the “Anti-LGBT Zone” stated, “We see a special need to protect schools and families and the right of every person to self-determination,” reported the Polish state news agency, according to Reuters.
“At the same time, we support the right of parents to raise their children according to their beliefs.”
During elections in 2020, Poland's current President Andrzej Duda declared that “LGBT is not people, it's an ideology.” He compared LGBTQ+ human rights to Poland's communist era and indoctrination, according to the Associated Press.
“Today, there are also attempts to push an ideology on us and our children, but different. It's totally new, but it is also neo-Bolshevism,” he said.