A group of gay fans of Poland’s national football team has asked for separate seating for GLBT fans at next year’s UEFA European Football Championships, which are being co-hosted by Poland and Ukraine.
The gay White Eagles fans, who call themselves Rainbow Stand 2012, say separate seating is needed to protect them and other gay football fans from homophobic football fans.
“We are not concerned about building a ghetto,” the group wrote on its website. “We are seeking to create a place where we can freely express our sporting fervour.
“Obviously we would prefer that in Poland there was no need for separate gay seats. Unfortunately, because of the aggression in the stadiums, things as they are, are not tenable.”
A leading Polish gay rights group has rejected the idea. A spokesman for the Campaign Against Homophobia said he understood what they were trying to do, but didn’t believe Polish gays would be prepared to out themselves by sitting in the seats, even if it separated them from homophobic fans.
In 2009 former White Eagles player Arkadiusz Onyszko was sacked from Danish club FC Midtjylland after he published a book in which he wrote that he hated gays and compared them to vomit.