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Newsletter Commissioner for Human Rights in Poland 30 August - 2 September 2016

Newsletter 30 August – 2 September 2016

MAIN MATTERS

Dr. Adam Bodnar’s first year as Commissioner for Human Rights

In September, Dr. Adam Bodnar will have been in office for one year. On that occasion, a meeting with journalists was held at the Office of the Commissioner for Human Rights [more]. Dr. Bodnar presented the main issues on which he has worked to-date as the Commissioner. He also spoke about the Commissioner’s regional meetings in which he collects information about problems encountered by citizens.

The results of the Commissioner’s work to-date are described in the interactive brochure available also as a pdf file.

The Commissioner on the attacks on Poles in the United Kingdom

After a brutal attack on Poles in the United Kingdom, the Commissioner requested the Consul of the Republic of Poland in London to provide information on steps taken in connection with the situation, and to determine whether there have been other cases of violence against migrants of Polish origin [more].

The Commissioner’s statement on data leakage from the PESEL database

Citizens have the right to expect that all information relating to them will be properly protected. Therefore, the state, when collecting personal data on its citizens, has an unconditional obligation to protect them. Data contained in the PESEL database should have never leaked to unauthorized persons, said the Commissioner for Human Rights in his statement [more].

Article 212: the Commissioner proposes changes in the legislation on defamation

In his application to the Minister of Justice, the Commissioner for Human Rights proposed possible legislative changes to make civil action a feasible alternative to seeking criminal liability in cases of defamation and to limit the application of Article 212 of the Penal Code [more].

THE COMMISSIONER ON CITIZENS’ MATTERS

How are citizens of cities protected against noisy large-scale events?

Residents of cities, e.g. of Warsaw, Wrocław, Częstochowa and Oława have complained to the Commissioner about noise nuisance connected with large-scale events. The Commissioner is of the opinion that the country lacks adequate legislation to regulate the issue [more].

Does everyone in a military unit have to know that a soldier has been treated in a psychiatric hospital?

Information that a soldier had been treated in a psychiatric hospital was included in orders for the day, announced in the person’s military unit. The Commissioner pointed to the Minister of National Defence that such announcement constituted a disclosure of sensitive data [more].

Rights of children born abroad

Polish public administration bodies refuse registration of foreign birth certificates and decisions confirming Polish citizenship of children (born abroad) of same-sex couples. The Commissioner pointed out the problem to the Minister of Internal Affairs and Administration [more].

The case of Mr Marian: may a prisoner receive parcels only from the relatives?

The Commissioner supported a prisoner’s complaint regarding non-conformity to the Constitution of the regulation prohibiting prisoners to receive food parcels from persons other than relatives [more].

THE SOCIETY

The need for a register of persons who fail to pay court-ordered alimony

The Commissioner and the Ombudsman for Children requested the Minister of Development to develop a register of maintenance debtors. The register would contribute to better collection of maintenance debts [more].

Lewiatan will join the campaign to support payment of court-ordered alimony

The Lewiatan Confederation of Employers will join the campaign to increase entrepreneurs’ awareness of the need to eliminate the phenomenon of avoidance of payment of court-ordered alimony. This way the Confederation will respond to the initiative of the team appointed by the Commissioner for Human Rights and the Ombudsman for Children [more].

How does Poland prevent discrimination of women?

The Commissioner inquired the Government Plenipotentiary for Civil Society and Equal Treatment about the implementation of recommendations of the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women [more].

LEGISLATION

How should patients of psychiatric hospitals be supervised during transport?

The transport of patients detained, as a preventive measure, in psychiatric hospitals and wards, outside the premises of those institutions, for the purpose of a medical consultation, examination or surgery, should be regulated – indicated the Commissioner in an application to the Minister of Justice [more].

May the Minister of National Defence order retirement of military prosecutors at any time?

Military prosecutors have been sent to retirement by the Minister of National Defence. Such changes should take place at the request of the Chief Military Prosecutor, but this was not the case. The Commissioner requested the Attorney General to look into the case [more].

The Commissioner withdraws the application to the Constitutional Tribunal pertaining to transitory facilities

The Commissioner for Human Rights has withdrawn his application to the Constitutional Tribunal pertaining to the placement of persons staying at juvenile detention centres and shelters for minors in the so-called transitory facilities. The regulations, challenged by the Commissioner, have been repealed by way of Regulation of the Minister of Justice [more].

Return of cultural objects unlawfully removed – reply of the Minister of Culture

The Commissioner has been informed by the Ministry of Culture and National Heritage that works on the implementation of the EU directive on the return of cultural objects unlawfully removed should be completed by the end of the year [more].

THE CHRONICLE

Summary of August traineeships

Employees of the Office of the Commissioner made me realize that human rights is not just a lofty idea, but sometimes issues so mundane as whether or not a prisoner may receive another roll of toilet paper in a month - said one of the trainees in the meeting which summarized the August traineeships in the Office of the Commissioner for Human Rights [more].

Meeting with a representative of the French Administrative Court

The Commissioner for Human Rights Dr. Adam Bodnar met with Judge Dominique Reinhorn, Vice President and rapporteur of the Chamber of the Administrative Court in Marseille [more].

The inaugural lecture of the Commissioner for Human Rights at the Bednarska School

It is not numbers and statistics that make a society excellent, but the courage and mobility of their citizens - said the Commissioner for Human Rights during a lecture inaugurating the school year at the Bednarska School [more]