Poland’s president Andrzej Duda just vowed to ban same-sex marriage, gay adoption and LGBT+ education in schools

Andrzej Duda considers same-sex civil partnerships

The president of Poland Andrzej Duda has pledged to ban LGBT+ education in schools, as well as blocking the legalisation of same-sex marriage and adoption.

President Duda ramped up his homophobic rhetoric on Wednesday to jump-start his re-election campaign, which had been interrupted by to coronavirus.

In an apparent pitch to his conservative base, he signed a ‘family values’ declaration that vows to “protect children from LGBT+ ideology” and prohibit the teaching of LGBT+ inclusion by public institutions.

“Parents are responsible for the sexual education of their children,” Reuters reported him saying. “It is not possible for any institutions to interfere in the way parents raise their children.”

His proposals include the preservation of special benefit schemes for families and pensioners, alongside the promise that same-sex couples will never be allowed to marry or adopt children.

“It’s a foreign ideology. There is no consent for this phenomenon to happen in our country in any way,” he said.

Polish President Andrzej Duda speaking with Donald Trump in the White House in 2018. (NICHOLAS KAMM/AFP/Getty)

In portraying LGBT+ people as contrary to family values, Duda has drawn a clear line between himself and his main opponent, liberal Warsaw mayor Rafal Trzaskowski.

Trzaskowski belongs to the main centre-right opposition Civic Platform (PO) party and has drawn criticism from religious conservatives for introducing LGBT-inclusive education in Warsaw schools.

Meanwhile, Duda is backed by the far-right nationalist Law and Justice (PiS) party, which won last year’s parliamentary election with a campaign based on a staunch opposition to LGBT+ rights.

PiS is keen to secure Duda’s re-election as it would cement the party’s grip on power, allowing it to complete reforms to the judiciary that have been challenged by the European Union for violating standards on democracy and rule of law.

The party’s leader Jaroslaw Kaczynski has previously claimed that “the affirmation of homosexuality will lead to the downfall of civilisation”, while other officials have compared homosexuality to “paedophilia, necrophilia and zoophilia”.