Norwegians are travelling to Poland this weekend to show support and solidarity with the Polish LGBT community and assorted human rights movements. Norwegian pop-punk-country band Glittermeat will be performing during the celebrations at the end of this year’s Equality parade in Warsaw.
In a public statement the six-piece band has said:
“We are extremely proud to be a part of this year’s Equality event in Warsaw. Poland has a long and proud history of standing up for freedom and diversity against closed-mindedness, hatred and totalitarianism. It is amazing to see momentum building in Poland behind the next great struggle for freedom – the struggle for people to be allowed to just be themselves, regardless of gender, sexual orientation, ethnicity, disability or age. So great is the Polish spirit of freedom that it has even reached us here in Norway – we are very grateful to the over 1200 freedom-loving Polish people who wrote protest letters demanding that Norway change its laws and allow people to officially change their gender identity without first submitting to sterilization. The law has now been changed, and we owe thanks to all the Polish people who helped us to acheive this great human rights victory in Norway! Time to celebrate! The struggle continues!”
Glittermeat is comprised of employees of Norway’s national equality body, The Equality and Anti-Discrimination Ombud, which advises employers and others on equality issues and investigates complaints of discrimination. In May 2016, Norwegian parliament passed legislation allowing individuals to officially change their registered gender identity without first undergoing sterilization as part of gender re-assignment surgery. This legislation is seen as a huge victory for the human and reproductive rights of transgendered individuals. Previously, transgendered individuals have had to have their reproductive organs removed before they could have their gender officially changed in public documents. Over 1200 letters were submitted to the Norwegian embassy in Poland as part of an Amnesty International campaign this past spring.