Newsletter Commissioner for Human Rights in Poland 14-18 May 2018


Why have persons with disabilities, protesting in the Sejm, been prohibited to go in and out of the building, the Commissioner for Human Rights asked the Speaker of the Sejm. He appealed for a more open approach to the protesters and for respecting their freedoms. The prohibition to go out for walks may be harmful to the health of people with disabilities. (more)

The CHR has appealed to the president of the State Social Security Institution for developing a new system of disability category classification. It should determine personalized support solutions required by specific persons, focusing on their potential rather than dysfunctions.  (more)

There are crowded primary schools, with instances of late afternoon lessons, or lessons in temporary buildings. There are also too many classes per week, and too much homework. Such negative outcomes of the reform of the education system have been described by Adam Bodnar in his letter to minister Anna Zalewska. (more)

The Commissioner has written to the Minister of the Environment with regard to urgent enforcement of the judgment of the EU Court of Justice regarding tree cutting in the Białowieża Forest. (more)

The CHR has withdrawn from the Constitutional Tribunal his motion regarding the so-called a posteriori consent for the use of wiretapping in court proceedings. He has justified his decision by the fact that the adjudicating panel included two persons he considered not entitled to adjudicate. This is the fourth such decision regarding the basis for work of intelligence services. (more)


People with disabilities as well as older persons must have the best possible access to public facilities and multi-family buildings, wrote the Commissioner to the Minister of Investment and Development. (more)

Meals in hospitals are often inadequate for patients. The CHR has appealed to the Minister of Health to introduce a change of the system. (more)

The Commissioner has expressed his doubts as to the legality of the police intervention during the scientific conference entitled Karl Marx: 2018. Participants of the conference were taking advantage of their constitutional freedom concerning science, emphasized the CHR who requested the police and the prosecutor’s office to provide explanations. (more)

The PKO BP bank freely uses the amount of PLN 637 million, collected by members of the apartment saving scheme that existed under the former political system, but the interest on those contributions is extremely low, said Adam Bodnar. (more)

The Commissioner reminds of the right to use payphones in prisons by persons deprived of liberty. (more)


The Supreme Court has considered Tomasz Komenda not guilty of rape and murder of a young woman. Now, the man is going to claim damages and compensation from the state for wrongful conviction. According to the CHR, it is necessary to identify the judicial system’s shortcomings because of which such mistakes may take place, in order to minimize their number. (more)

The Commissioner has submitted an appeal against the judgment of  the court of first instance, which dismissed the CHR’s motion to give up the Roma persons’ eviction from a building in the town of Limanowa. The court did not refer to the CHR’s objection that the town authorities’ interference with the Roma persons’ to private life was not compliant with the principle of proportionality. (more)

The zero VAT rate applies to services consisting in sea shore reinforcement works, adjudicated the Supreme Administrative Court. The Court annulled the judgment of the court which had ruled that contractor should charge 23 percent VAT. The company owner was supported by the CHR. (more)

The time limit of three years since the 18th birthday for questioning the fatherhood of his/her mother’s husband is not compliant with the Constitution, adjudicated the Constitutional Tribunal. The CHR had joined the constitutional complaint regarding the issue. (more)

A person who has been a victim of an offence and wants to support the prosecutor in the proceedings has the right to appeal against the court’s decision not allowing the person to participate in this role, adjudicated the Constitutional Tribunal , following the CHR’s motion. (more)


On 15-17 May, during his regional meetings, Adam Bodnar met with residents of Ełk, Gołdap, Kętrzyn, Giżycko and Szczytno. The CHR also took part in the 17th Convent of Rural Area Organizations. (more)

Adam Bodnar met with Zeid Ra'ad Al-Hussein, United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, in Geneva. The conversation concerned the main problems concerning human rights protection in Poland, including the situation of the judiciary, the threats to the rule of law and the situation of people with disabilities. (more)

The CHR’s representatives paid an unannounced visit to the railway border crossing in Terespol. (more)

The subject of this year’s International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia was ALLIANCE, in order to emphasize that it is necessary to build an alliance and solidarity in order to ensure security, prevent violence, increase legal protection and social awareness. (more)

Krzysztof Olkowicz from the CHR Office took part in the parade of persons with intellectual disability on the occasion of the Day of Dignity. (more)