Traditionally a conservative and Catholic country, Poland is making small but noticeable steps in becoming more open-minded. At the forefront of this transition is Anna Grodzka, the first transgender lawmaker to be elected into the Polish parliament. She is now up for deputy speaker, a role that will give her a stronger voice in proposing laws and an elevated position in the Polish embassy.
After her surgery in 2010, Grodzka was elected into parliament in 2011. Along with her election came the rise of the progressive party - Palikot's Movement - which supports gay rights and hopes to decrease the influence of the Catholic church in politics. Robert Biedron, Poland's first openly gay lawmaker, was also part of this new progressive shift. This move to a more liberal point of view is apparent but slow going. There has been more support of in vitro fertilization and additional gay rights, showing a pull away from the church, but it hasn't been all smooth sailing. Recently legislation was rejected for civil partners, gay or straight.
But the change is on! Small steps are better than no steps. When the elections are done this Friday we will see if Poland makes another step forward by electing Anna Grodzka as deputy speaker.
Images via wyborcza.pl, presseurop.edu, se.pl
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