Gender equality department director quits: Slovakia set out for Polish and Hungarian example

Oľga Pietruchová leaves after nine years.

Oľga PietruchováOľga Pietruchová (Source: TASR)

After nine years, Oľga Pietruchová has quit the lead post in the gender equality department at the Labour Ministry. The reason is the constant deterioration of the situation there, she wrote on Facebook on May 19.

“The mad campaign against the Istanbul Convention and the ‘gender ideology’ reached a peak in resistance towards this agenda, and the only thing we managed to do was defend the status quo and at least pretend abroad that we are a country professing the gender equality values of the EU and the civilised world,” Pietruchová noted.

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Although the election brought a change for the better in many areas, this cannot be said for gender equality, women’s rights, and human rights in general, she continued.

“Our ministry, led by ‘the last crusader’, is changing our previous expert statements and forces us to accept the comments of the Conference of Bishops of Slovakia, who are trying to erase gender equality from the vocabulary altogether,” she wrote.

Joining Hungary and Poland

The last crusader is the self-imposed nickname of the current Labour Minister Milan Krajniak of Sme Rodina. In the 2019 interview with the Sme daily, the former presidential candidate explained he obtained the name in the past and is proud of it.

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“I am convinced that ‘gentlemanship’ or something we call knightly honour should apply also today,” Krajniak said back then. “For me, it means that I speak what I think and I do what I speak. At the same time, I do not attack opponents from behind and respect their opinions, even though I do not agree with them.”

Pietruchová grimly concluded that Slovakia is on the way to joining Hungary and Poland, which also face problems with accepting gender- and LGBTI-related agenda.

“All I can do now is hope that society can mobilise and reverse this trend,” she noted.

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