Polish Minister Excluded From EU-Jury Because of “Homophobic” Statement

Country: European Institutions (EU, ECHR, et.al.)

Date of incident: October 3, 2010

Polish equality minister Elzabieta Radziszewska not asked to be a jury-member for this year’s EU journalism award “Together against Discrimination” after explaining rights of schools with regard to employing homosexual teachers.

The European Commission is not going to ask the Polish Government Plenipotentiary for Equal Treatment Elzabieta Radziszewska to be a jury-member for this year’s EU journalism award “Together against Discrimination”. Although the commission declined to give a reason for its decision, it seems rather compelling that Radziszewska ‘s exclusion is due to her comments on homosexuality in a televised public debate. Elzabieta Radziszewska, Polish equality minister, is facing accusations of "homophobia" since she took part in a public debate on television on September 21st. She said that a catholic school has the right not to employ or to discard a homosexual teacher, because of a possible conflict with the school’s principles. During the discussion with Krzysztof Smiszek, deputy head of the Polish Society for Anti-Discrimination Law, she “outed” him as being gay: "We know he is a member of the homosexual society and an activist for the Campaign Against Homophobia". Radziszewska’s performance triggered a wave of angry responses of gay and human rights groups as well as trade unions. Smiszek demands her resignation: "In no other EU country would such a person still holds their post. I do not hide my sexual orientation, but it's my private business." The European Intergroup on LGBT Rights campaigned for the exclusion of the Minister as a member of the jury for the EU journalism award, which has now been announced.  Radziszewska apologised for her comments but still defended her opinion. For further information please visit: http://www.wbj.pl/article-51262-polish-equality-minister-outs-man-as-homosexual-on-tv.html?type=wbj http://www.thenews.pl/national/artykul140195.html http://www.lgbt-ep.eu/parliamentary-work/meps-ask-urgent-question-polish-secretary-of-state-for-equal-treatment/