- Year of publication: 2020
- Source: Show
- Pages: 5-14
- DOI Address: -
When in 2020 the World Health Organization announced a COVID-19 contagious disease pandemic, it was clear that governments must take actions to limit the consequences of pandemia. Poland was one of the first to introduce far-reaching measures, limiting freedom of movement and closing an increasing number of business and activities. The Polish Constitution contains potential extraordinary measures, including the provision for declaring a “state of natural disaster”, but the Polish government has refrained from enacting it. Instead, it is based on a “state of epidemic”, which is not provided for in the Constitution as the legal ground for limiting human rights. The purpose of this study is to answer the question whether human rights restrictions introduced during the epidemic have a sufficient legal basis from the point of view of the Polish Constitution and the resulting principles.
epidemic restrictions extraordinary measures state of natural disaster epidemia ograniczenia COVID-19 proporcjonalność stan klęski żywiołowej stany nadzwyczajne prawa człowieka human rights proportionality
The author assesses constitutional practice after 2015 in Poland in the context of constitutional changes, and indicates that no formal change has occurred. Instead, she is considering qualifying the actions of the ruling majority as Verfassungsdurchbrechung, an institution known from the political practice of the Weimar Republic. However, she concludes that an informal constitutional change is a more appropriate institution to describe the political reality in Poland. The author shows practices that can be qualified in this way (reinterpretation and interpretation of the text of the constitution by the CT, creation of competences unknown to the constitution by the legislature and the executive power, emptying of the text of the constitution). Furthermore, these practices also step beyond a simple violation of the constitution, as they aim to build a new system (illiberal constitutionalism).
The purpose of the article is to conduct an axiological reflection using the notion of public interest, on preparation and the procedure for amending the constitution. The article provides a theoretical attempt to capture and place public interest in the broadly socially and publicly understood process of constitutional change. This attempt is not dictated solely by the desire to conduct theoretical – legal and intellectual speculation. This is supported by the increasing voices of the need to amend the existing constitution, which are often superficial, populist and de facto formulated from the position of the supremacy of the state over the individual. The time-varying connotations of the general public interest clause are related to the axiology of selected constitutional principles. The public interest, understood at a given moment in the development of social life, should be a determinant of the process broadly, i.e. both the social and the legislative sense of the constitutional amendment. Similarly, the very direction of constitutional changes should be an expression of social interest.
The subject of the article is the analysis of the provisions of the Art. 35 (2) of the Act on Local Referendum against the background of the Art. 31 (3) of the Constitution of the Republic of Poland, creating the conditions for admissibility of formulating restrictions on the use of constitutionally specified provisions the rights and freedoms of the individual. The aim of the study is to determine whether the statutory regulation under review remains compliant with the constitutional principle of proportionality regarding the citizen’s right to a court. The main thesis is that the disposition of the Art. 35 (2) of the Local Referendum Act does not infringe the individual’s rights related to the pursuit of claims related to unreliable referendum campaigns.
The Polish National Assembly is a constitutional governing body, endowed with unique powers that cannot be exercised by any other body. However, the status of the Assembly as a separate state organ raises doubts. Since the restoration of the Assembly, its position in the system has changed significantly, which was related to the multiple modification of the competences of this organ. The evolution of this organ in 1989-2020 allows treating it as an interesting research case. Especially since the competences of the National Assembly are crucial for ensuring the continuity of state power.
odpowiedzialność konstytucyjna prezydenta wybór prezydenta kreowanie ustroju państwa Zgromadzenie Narodowe Rzeczpospolita Polska constitutional responsibility of the president election of the president creating the state system National Assembly Republic of Poland
On 26 March 2020, by a resolution adopted on 26 March 2020, the Standing Orders of the Sejm of the Republic of Poland were amended to allow the sessions to be conducted using electronic means of remote communication. These amendments raise serious reservations as to their constitutionality. This is due to the fact that the Constitution of 1997 stipulates that the Sejm and Senate shall meet at sessions, while the meeting, being a concept that has been defined, is defined as the assembly of MPs in one place in order to consider the matter under discussion. In addition, as parliamentary practice has demonstrated, the changes introduced have generated a number of problems related to Deputies’ attendance at such remote sessions, participation in debates and casting votes. As a consequence, this may lead to weakening of the legitimacy of the work of the Chamber and a reduction in the capacity to exercise the mandate.
The article concerns the Polish regulation and practice concerning postal voting. After presenting some background information on postal voting in Poland, such as the circumstances of its introduction in 2011 and changes it has undergone since then, the author focuses on the latest amendments related to postal voting in the presidential election that were ordered for 10 May 2020. The issue has recently become extremely topical as the ruling party wanted to use postal voting for a large scale as a remedy for problems with holding the traditional election due to the COVID-19 pandemic. That idea was followed by the adoption of a specific law which, however, has aroused many controversies and great doubts about its constitutionality, mainly related to the way it was proceeded.
The principle of a state of law belongs to the basic canons of contemporary democracy and remains the fundamental constitutional value and principle of all the democratic states. Its scope and interpretation usually are derived from the national constitutional order and results primarily from the basic law. In the Constitution of the Republic of Poland of 1997, being currently in force, it adopted the formula of the principle of a democratic legal state, combining the elements of a state of law, the rule of law and the democratic method of exercising power. Its contemporary understanding is derived from the output of the European constitutional law doctrine, the systemic experience of states with mature, established and solidified traditions of democracy, as well as from the judicature of the Constitutional Tribunal. This paper aims at conducting analysis of the content and scope of the principle of a democratic legal state provided by the Polish basic law.
The main goal of that article is to assess the impact of the new solutions on changes in the legal regulation of Elbląg, where such an initiative has been already in place since 2014, and examine whether the practice of using this mechanism of social participation has led to new changes. The amendment of the Act on the Commune Self-Government has not caused a significant qualitative change. Admittedly, the number of signatures required for a civic proposal was reduced, and - although only after the voivode’s intervention - the time limit for their collection was removed, negative elements can still be observed, such as the lack of imposing an obligation on city officials to assist in preparing a draft resolution. In addition to that, attention should be paid to the need for introducing educational and information activities, the lack of which can often lead to non-application of regulations in practice, even those that are of high quality.
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