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Home >> News >> Equality Bodies >> Poland: Round-Table Meeting with Civil Society on Women’s Rights in (...)

Poland: Round-Table Meeting with Civil Society on Women’s Rights in Poland

December 20th 2017

A round-table meeting on women’s rights was organised by the Council of Europe Commissioner for Human Rights on 6 December in Warsaw.


In follow-up to his last country visit in 2016, the Commissioner had recommended to the Polish authorities to take measures to fight gender-based stereotypes, advance gender equality, and strengthen existing measures to combat domestic violence. On women’s sexual and reproductive health and rights, he recommended that mandatory age-appropriate, evidence-based and non-judgmental sexuality education be taught in all schools. He also recommended that access to safe and legal abortion, as provided by law, be fully implemented in practice, and encouraged the authorities to further decriminalise abortion. The purpose of this meeting was to discuss the follow-up given to the Commissioner’s recommendations and the current situation with the civil society organisations concerned.


Agenda Round-Table Meeting
Agenda Round-Table Meeting

Discussion on domestic violence and violence against women

Moderator: Dr Sylwia Spurek, Polish Deputy Ombudsman and Equinet Board Member

Topics discussed: Istanbul Convention, achievements and challenges to implementation; police search of premises and seizure of assets in premises of NGOs assisting women victims of violence.

Discussion on Women’s Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights (SRHR)

Moderator: Ms Krystyna Kacpura, Federation for Women’s Rights and Family Planning

Topics discussed: draft laws aimed at restricting or liberalising current law on abortion; access to safe and legal abortion; access to contraceptives; refusal of service provision on grounds of conscience or religion; access to sexuality education.

Discussion on gender equality and non-discrimination

Moderator: Dr Krzysztof Śmiszek, Polish Association of Anti-Discrimination Law

Topics discussed: combating gender stereotypes in all fields of life including education, media and justice; women’s access to employment and education; women’s participation in public and business lives; temporary special measures.

For more information, please visit the website of the Commissioner for Human Rights and that of the Council of Europe.

Useful reading is the report on Women’s Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights in Europe.