Vulnerable groups

25. The Committee notes the adoption of the Equal Treatment Act in 2010 and the provisions of the Penal Code prohibiting hate crimes (arts. 119, 256 and 257), but considers that neither the Act nor the Penal Code provide adequate and specific protection against discrimination based on sexual orientation, disability or age. It is concerned at the prevalence of racial violence and other acts of racial abuse targeting persons of Arab, Asian and African origin, and manifestations of anti-Semitism. It is also concerned at the significant rise in manifestations of hate speech and intolerance directed at lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people and the persistent discrimination against members of the Roma community (arts. 2, 11 and 16).

The Committee recommends that the State party incorporate offences in its Penal Code to ensure that hate crimes and acts of discrimination and violence that target persons on the basis of their sexual orientation, disability or age are punished accordingly. It also urges the State party to take all necessary measures to combat discrimination and violence against persons of Arab, Asian and African origin, lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people and persons belonging to the Roma community and to take effective measures to prevent all manifestations of anti-Semitism. Moreover, the State party should continue to be vigilant in ensuring that the relevant existing legal and administrative measures are strictly observed and that training curricula and administrative directives constantly remind staff that such acts will not be tolerated and will be sanctioned accordingly. The Committee refers the State party to its general comment no. 2 (2007) on the implementation of article 2 by States parties, section V: “Protection for individuals and groups made vulnerable by discrimination or marginalization”.

Link to full text of the report: Concluding Observations-CAT-Poland-2013-eng


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