A lesbian couple in Poland has won a lengthy and unprecedented legal battle to register their child in that nation. Yesterday, Poland’s Supreme Administrative Court handed down a decision to permit a Polish woman and her partner to obtain a birth certificate for their son, who is now four years old.
Poland is a country where the vast majority of citizens are Roman Catholic—96 percent—and same-sex marriage is illegal. LGBTQ people in Poland have fewer civil rights than in other European countries. There is no legal recognition of same-sex couples at all, which makes this historic victory truly groundbreaking.
According to Reuters, the woman (who is not named) and her female partner got registered as the parents in Britain, where their son was actually born in 2014. A year later, after they had returned to Poland, local government officials denied their attempts to get a birth certificate in that country. A long-fought struggle through the court system ensued.
But on Thursday, an official of the Supreme Administrative Court confirmed to Reuters that the nation’s highest court had ruled in the lesbian couple’s favor.
“This ruling will open up new legal possibilities for gay parents,” said Pavel Knut, an attorney representing The Campaign Against Homophobia, a Polish gay rights organization. “It civilizes and increases the safety of families who choose to live partially in Poland and partially abroad.”
Reuters also reported that the ruling nationalist Law and Justice (PiS) party in Poland—a party comprised largely of conservative legislators who oppose same-sex marriage—declined to comment on the court’s decision.
The future consequences of this legal triumph remain to be seen. It is too early to tell if this is just an anomaly or a sign of more positive change to come for LGBTQ people in Poland. But for at least one Polish lesbian couple and their son, a judge agrees that love makes a family, and there are now brighter days ahead.