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Local government press need to be included in agenda of Sejm Culture Committee, call HFHR and association of local newspapers

The HFHR and the Association of Local Newspapers (ALN) have issued a call for action to Elżbieta Kruk, chairperson of the Sejm Committee for Culture and the Media, asking her to include the problem of press titles published by the local government in the Committee’s agenda.

“In the assessment of the initiators of the call for action, the practice of publishing newspapers by the local government is contrary to the applicable law, and in particular to the constitutionally guaranteed right to the freedom of speech, right to public information, right to carry out a business activity and also the constitutional principle of subsidiarity”, says Adam Ploszka, a member of the Foundation’s legal team.

The HFHR and ALN have reported this issue to public authorities on several occasions in recent years. Recently, the HFHR has petitioned the Commissioner for Human Rights to initiate the constitutional review of Article 8 of the Press Law Act, which provides the legal basis for the publication of newspapers by local authorities.

At the same time, the CHR issued a general statement to the Minister of the Interior and Administration, indicating the problem and requesting the taking of an appropriate legislative action. In his response, the Minister suggested the inclusion of a wider circle of stakeholders, including the Ministry of Culture and National Heritage.

Unfortunately, no attempts have been made to launch such a discussion. Given the above, the HFHR and ALN call for creating a forum for a discussion about the press published by local government authorities at a session of the Sejm Committee for Culture and the Media.

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