Fermoy threatens to sever ties with Polish town over LGBT+ stance

Twin town has until mid-September to change its anti-LGBT+position or Fermoy will cut its ties entirely
Fermoy threatens to sever ties with Polish town over LGBT+ stance
 Fermoy threatens to break relationship with "twin-town" Nowa Deba that has declared itself a LGBT+ zone. Picture: David Paul Morris/Getty Images

Fermoy has threatened to sever its twinning relationship with a Polish town over the latter's anti-LGBT+ stance.

The north cork town's municipal district council has told its counterpart, Nowa Deba, that it has suspended the twinning relationship between the two and will sever it entirely if it does not change its position by mid-September.

The Fermoy council has chosen that cut-off point because it will not have any meetings between now and then, though councillors do not expect a positive reply, if any.

The issue was raised at a meeting by Fine Gael councillor Noel McCarthy, who said it is “totally unacceptable” that around 100 municipalities in Poland, including Nowa Deba, have declared themselves to be LGBT+ free zones.

“We twinned with them [Nowa Deba] in 2006. I represent the council on the twinning committee and I think we should be seen not to accept this. In Ireland we have supported gay marriages. We respect everybody's rights,” Mr McCarthy said.

He said he believed this had nothing to do with the ordinary people of Poland and declared that those on the twinning committee in Nowa Deba “are lovely people".

“Unless a positive response is issued by Nowa Deba by the time of our September meeting, we will formally cut our twinning ties," Mr McCarthy said.

"Anti-LGBT+ agendas have no place in our society and Fermoy will not associate ourselves with such ideology,”

Cobh Municipal District Council has not yet gone as far as Fermoy but has written to its twinned town, Kolbuzowa, about “its displeasure” at similar anti-LGBT+ sentiments.

This happened after the issue was raised by Green Party councillor Alan O'Connor, who also won unanimous support from his council colleagues.

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