Fermoy's former sister town Nowa Dęba backtracks on 'LGBT-free zone' status

The town of Nowa Dęba has rescinded the 'LGBT-free zone' declaration which lost them their twinning arrangement with Fermoy.


The Polish town of Nowa Dęba, which declared itself an ‘LGBT-free zone’, has rescinded this declaration.

Following Nowa Dęba’s declaration last year, their sister town of Fermoy in Co. Cork announced their decision to terminate their twinning arrangement.

Nowa Dęba was one of over 100 Polish municipalities stating they were against “LGBT ideology”.

The spread of ‘LGBT-free zones’ across Poland has been condemned at many levels and has resulted in a loss of EU funding for the ‘LGBT-free’ towns.

In July 2020, the Commission rejected the applications of six ‘LGBT-free’ Polish towns for community funding because their discriminatory political stance does not respect “fundamental rights”.

Today, regional newspaper Tygodnik Nadwiślański has reported that the City Council in Nowa Dęba has withdrawn the resolution with the chairperson of the City Council reportedly saying that “the council’s intentions have been misunderstood”.

East Cork TD James O’Connor tweeted: “It goes to show that Fermoy and North Cork can have an impact on an international stage.

“The Minister of State for European Affairs, Thomas Byrne had raised this matter with colleagues at an EU Level,” he added.

The previous partnership between the two towns included visits between the two towns as well as several cultural events and exchanges over a 14 year period.

Minister for European Affairs, Thomas Byrne, told GCN that he “very much welcomed” the decision:

“Both I and Minister Coveney they have been in touch with our counterparts in Poland to raise the issue of LGBT rights in Poland. Poland are our friends and they’ve been very strong with Ireland and I think we need to talk honesty sense as well and we have done that on this issue.

“We look forward to further progress in Poland on LGBT rights. Can I also pay special tribute to our embassy and ambassador in Poland, who are very strong in the promotion of LGBT rights in Poland and supporting local civil society on the issues as well.”

© 2021 GCN (Gay Community News). All rights reserved.

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