On 28 April 1947, the large scale action of forced resettlement of Ukrainians and Lemkos, Polish citizens, from the south-eastern provinces of Poland to the north-west region of the country started. In three months, over 140,000 persons were resettled. Some of them were transported to the Central Labour Camp in Jaworzno, in which 160 persons died a result of hunger, illnesses and torture.
- It is not just about populism as a political method, but about the use of populism to destroy constitutional courts. In such circumstances, the ombudsman must be a guardian of values such as human rights.
On Sunday, 2 April 2017, 20 years have passed since the adoption of the current text of the Constitution. On that occasion, the CHR Office organized meetings and discussions open to the general public, e.g. with prof. Ewa Łętowska, the first Polish Commissioner for Human Rights and with prof. Jerzy Ciemniewski, one of the authors of the current Constitution.
Assistance to homeless Poles living abroad, the operation of the system of free-of-charge legal advice provision, and issues relating to language used by public authorities and its impact on communication with the society were the issues discussed by Commissioner for Human Rights Adam Bodnar in his meeting with President Andrzej Duda on 7 March 2017.
The Commissioner for Human Rights received a letter from the Ombudswoman of the Republic of Bulgaria concerning the attack on human rights defender Krassimir Kanev. She expressed her support for the activities of Mr. Kanev, and opposed to any form of aggression against the rights of individuals.
"A judge and the Constitution: the crisis in the Constitutional Tribunal’s work, and distributed control of the law’s consistence with the Constitution” was the title of the conference, held on 3 March in Katowice. The event was attended by deputy CHR Stanisław Trociuk.
„Protection of human rights in times of constitutional crisis in Poland” is the title of the lecture delivered by dr. Adam Bodnar at the Albert Ludwik University in Freiburg. The meeting was organised by Arbeitkreis Kritischer Juristen und Juristinnen Freiburg - student's association of the Law Faculty in Freiburg.
On 15 January, the 25th Finale of the Great Orchestra of Christmas Charity was held. This year, the income from the action will support life-saving and healthcare equipment at general pediatric wards, and will contribute to decent health care for seniors.
The Commissioner for Human Rights together with the CHR Office employees developed a ranking of problems which, in 2016, posed the greatest threats from the point of view of the respect for human rights and civil rights in our country. The Commissioner also indicated issues on which clear progress has been achieved or positive changes have been announced.
Today, fewer people justify their claims for a better life on the grounds of human rights. More people justify such claims in the categories which are based on emotions, anger, the feeling of insult or resentment. And those claims which indeed are based on human rights are now difficult to hear.
In his special statement before the Senate, the CHR warned that the Bill on Assemblies currently drafted by the Parliament does not meet the standards of a democratic state and the standards of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe.
Adam Bodnar sent letters to the Ombudsman of the Republic of Bulgaria Maya Manolova and the Ambassador of Bulgaria to Poland Emil Savov Yalnazov in connection with the attack on human rights defender Krassimir Kanev. He expressed his sorrow and support for the activities of Mr. Kanev.
The Human Rights Committee adopted concluding observations on the seventh periodic report of Poland. The Committee periodically monitors the implementation of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights by the states-signatories of the Covenant. The Committee is composed of 18 independent experts.
One of the conclusions of Adam Bodnar’s visit to London, held as a result of the attacks on Poles living in the UK, is that cooperation between the UK and Poland in the field of education should be strengthened. The Commissioner has forwarded an letter on the matter to the Minister of Education.
Today dr. Adam Bodnar has met with Anar Mammadli, prominent human rights activist in Azerbaijan and former political prisoner. Also present at the meeting were: Nils Muižnieks, Commissioner for Human Rights of the Council of Europe, Anna Zamejc, a journalist specializing in azeri topics and Agnieszka Grzelak from the Office of the Commissioner for Human Rights.
The Commissioner for Human Rights Adam Bodnar met on September 20 with Tom Malinowski, the Assistant Secretary at the Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor of the US Department of State. The meeting was also attended the Deputy Commissioner for Human Rights dr. Sylwia Spurek and Director of the Team for Equal Treatment Anna Błaszczak-Banasiak.
Dr. Adam Bodnar sent a letter of condolence on death of Mikael Danielyan to the Ambassador of the Republic of Armenia. Mikael Danielyan was the President of Armenian “Helsinki Association” and prominent human rights activist.
The Constitutional Tribunal has forwarded to the Commissioner for Human Rights a copy of the judgement of 11 August on the so-called Constitutional Tribunal “improvement” act of 22 July 2016, together with the statement of reasons for the judgement and the dissenting opinions.
The Ombudsmen of Catalonia, Ireland, Estonia and Austria were examining the constitutional status of the Polish Commissioner for Human Rights and his ability to exercise his function in an independent manner. The exploratory mission was summed up during the press conference. They also participated in the open debate "Why do we need Ombudsmen in Europe"
The Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) and the OSCE’s Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (OSCE/ODIHR) join the Council of Europe, the European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights (FRA), the European Network of European National Human Rights Institutions (ENNHRI) and the European Network of Equality Bodies (Equinet) in a statement
Having learned about the death of Mr Michael Ratner, reputable lawyer, activist and long-standing director of the Center for Constitutional Rights (CCR), Mr Adam Bodnar, Commissioner for Human Rights offered his condolences to H.E. Paul W. Jones, Ambassador of the United States to the Republic of Poland.