Cardiff LGBT+ community protest in fight against rise of homophobia in Poland

A socially distanced protest has seen activists and speakers showing their solidarity to the Polish LGBT+ community. Led by Christian Webb, the meeting saw activists and speakers meeting on the lawns of City Hall in Cardiff. He said: “Over the last 5 years animosity and persecution of LGBT+ people in Poland has increased.

“It’s down to the fact that the right-wing Law and Justice party has been getting a lot of media attention” “They claim that being LGBT+ is an ideology that is infecting Polish schools and Polish identity and religious identity”.

Organiser Christian Webb, 25 from Cardiff, also spoke at the demonstration

The re-election of president Andrzej Duda, who has openly spoke out against the LGBT+ community in his presidential campaign, have resulted in attacks against the LGBT+ community increasing. Under Duda’s government, LGBT+ free zones have taken over one third of the country.

The protest in Cardiff also highlighted the plight of activist Malgorzata Szutowicz (Margot) on August 8, who was arrested for damaging a truck which was playing homophobic content from it’s speakers. Margot, along with 48 activists, could face a prison sentence of up to seven years. “We’re calling for her release and we’re also calling for the release of the 48 activists who were supporting her during her sentencing,” Christian added.

“There’s a lot of pressure on the EU commission for their lack of condemnation of the Polish government. We need them coming down hard on Poland.”

Cardiff LGBT+ community protest in fight against rise of homophobia in PolandKamil spoke openly at the protest about his own experience with homophobia when he went home to see family

Kamil Jantos, 26, moved to Cardiff from Poland 10 years ago. He said: “Recently with the re-election of the president, it’s gone downhill.

Everything is more homophobic than it was before. “I think all over the world people should know the situation happening in Poland. The LGBT+ community have been trying to fight for their rights for a long time”.

Kamil recently visited his grandmother at his hometown in Poland where he was a victim of homophobic abuse. “It’s like being at hell at the moment. I recently went back to Poland for two weeks to my hometown, and I faced homophobia twice,” Kamil said.

“Someone stopped outside my grandfather’s house, called me a faggot, and told me to go back to the UK.”

Recently, an organisation in Poland called Stop Bzdurom has been created to counter the anti LGBT+ narrative taking place.

The organisation educates visitors to the website with links to petitions and regularly hosts dance protests in Poland to highlight that LGBT+ people exist and matter.

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