Introduction

AuthorBojarski, Lukasz
Pages13-13
13
INTRODUCTION
The national legal system
Legislative power in Poland is centralised. The basic law is the 1997 Constitution. Other
sources of universally binding law include acts/statutes of Parliament (ustawy); ratified
international agreements that become part of domestic law after ratification;22 and
ordinances/regulations (rozporzdzenia) issued by a Minister or by the Council of
Ministers. Legislative power is exercised jointly by the House of Deputies, known as the
Sejm, and the Senate, which are the two houses of Parliament. In order for a piece of
legislation to be adopted, both houses must consent and the President who is
empowered to employ the right of veto (which may be rejected in Parliament) must
sign it. The act must then be promulgated in the Journal of Laws.
List of main legislation transposing and implementing the directives
Act on the Implementation of Certain Provisions of the European Union in the Field of
Equal Treatment23
Date of adoption: 3 December 2010
Protected grounds: gender, race, ethnic origin, nationality, citizenship,24 religion, belief,
political opinion, disability, age and sexual orientation
Material scope: full scope as covered by Directives 2000/43/EC and 2000/78/EC:
employment (all grounds), selected grounds protected in access to goods and services
(including housing), social protection, social advantages, education
Act on the Labour Code25 (implementation amendment)
Date of adoption: 14 November 2003
Protected grounds: gender, age, disability, race, religion, nationality, political opinion,
membership of a trade union, ethnic origin, belief, sexual orientation, employment for a
definite or indefinite period of time, employment part-time or fu ll-time; the list remains
open
Material scope: Employment
Act on the Commissioner for Human Rights26 (implementation amendment)
Date of adoption: 3 December 2010
Protected grounds: no grounds mentioned
Material scope: full scope (but between natural persons and the state/public institutions,
not between private parties)
22 For instance, the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD), after ratification
(September 2012) and publication in the Journal of Laws (October 2012), became part of binding domestic
law.
23 Equal Treatment Act, 3 December 2010.
24 Protection is limited to certain categories of persons, and discrimination on the grounds of citizenship as
such is not prohibited in the ETA; see more in Section 2.1.
25 Labour Code, 26 June 1974.
26 Act on the Commissioner for Human Rights, 15 July 1987.

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