Polish judge's tweet on transgender child stirs outrage

by Reuters
Thursday, 8 April 2021 15:18 GMT

FILE PHOTO: People gather outside a court in solidarity with three activists accused of offending religious feelings by putting a rainbow on a painting of Virgin Mary in Plock, Poland, February 17, 2021. REUTERS/Kacper Pempel

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Opposition politicians accused a senior Polish judge of putting a trans child in danger by tweeting her personal details

By Alicja Ptak

WARSAW, April 8 (Reuters) - A senior Polish judge put a transgender child in danger by tweeting about her and a complaint will likely be filed with prosecutors, an opposition politician said on Thursday regarding the incident which has outraged liberal Poles.

Gender and LGBT rights have become central flashpoints in a wider culture war unfolding in Poland between religious conservatives and liberals, with the former branding the fight for gay rights a dangerous ideology that seeks to subvert traditional values, and the latter calling for more tolerance.

Krystyna Pawlowicz, a Constitutional Tribunal judge and former politician from the ruling nationalist Law and Justice (PiS) party, tweeted the first name, age, and primary school of a transgender child in Podkowa Lesna, a town in central Poland.

She said the school had instructed teachers to use the student's chosen name and gender, as per her parents' request. "Data on official records was disregarded," she said.

The tweet caused a social media outcry with users pointing out that the information given could be used to identify the child.

"Today we will probably file a notice to the prosecutor's office in connection with what Krystyna Pawlowicz is doing because she knowingly put a... child in danger," Cezary Tomczyk from the opposition Civic Coalition party told website onet.pl.

Pawlowicz, one of the judges whose ruling last year led to a near total ban on abortion in Poland, apologised later on Thursday, saying she had removed the tweet.

"The case is much more complicated than I was informed. I didn't want to cause any distress to the child. I'm sorry," she wrote on Twitter.

The PiS has long argued that Lesbian Gay Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) rights are part of an invasive foreign ideology that undermines Polish values and the traditional family. It also opposes sex education in schools.

(Reporting by Alicja Ptak; Editing by Alan Charlish and Mark Heinrich)

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