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Black people in Poland


Jonathan W  
2 Sep 2006 /  #1
I'm an African american male who is looking to do volunteer work in Poland. My friends find it funny that as a black man I want to go to Poland. How is the atmosphere between blacks and everyone else? Do Polish women like black men??
IndianPolishGurl  
3 Sep 2006 /  #2
heyy... well I met an african man on my last stay in poland... and I met some indians too :) So I would say that u will be noticed... yes... but its not bad, its more like they'll be saying how exotic u look :) (not always right to u though). They might just look and u and smile... but also expect that u dont speak polish because u dont look polish... which in my case was good... but i wanted to practice so i spoke back in polish :)
ola123  
3 Sep 2006 /  #3
Peple will be staring at black person in Poland beacuse its still unusual to meet black male (or female) here. If you have no problem with that come to Poland :).
Cornelius  
3 Sep 2006 /  #4
Please read this:

"In its third report on Poland, released in June, the European Commission against Racism and Intolerance (ECRI) expressed concern that the authorities rarely investigated and prosecuted cases of racial hatred, and allowed anti-Semitic material to freely circulate on the market. ECRI pointed out that in investigating violent attacks against ethnic minorities, such as Roma or migrants, the police often did not take into account the racist motivation of crimes, which resulted in a lighter sentence for the perpetrator, if convicted. Moreover, there was still no comprehensive body of legislation prohibiting racial discrimination in all fields of life."

In short, racism is yet to be criminalised in Poland. The above excerpt is taken from the Amnesty International website

Jonathan. One thing I would say is to do as much research as possible before you go.

My brother in law is a black Zimbabwean who went to Poland to study. He was forced to leave halfway through his studies after being repeatedly spat at and abused for nothing other than his skin colour.

I admire your drive to work as a volunteer, I would however advise against choosing Poland as a destination for a black person.

Many Poles would argue with what I have said, all I would say is that I wouldn't want you to travel all the way from the US for such an honourable cause only to learn the hard way that racial abuse in Poland is a big problem and one that is apparently ignored by Polish authorities.
ola123  
3 Sep 2006 /  #5
In my University we had a few foreigners: from Italy, Germany, Korea or Kazachtan, they talked in their language between them and there wasnt any problem at all. They lived in rooms with other students- Poles and they invited their new friens among Poles to their countries for holidays. Lecturers were always wery friendly towards them, more friendly than for other sudents. I didnt notice any sing of racism in my University. They went out with Poles and made friendships with them. Personally I found that very enjoyable talking to foreigner because meeting other culture is always interesting for me.

But it was Univerity, I dont know where do you want to work though and I as wrote black person is not usual thing here. I have never seen any sign of racism here in Poland, you dont meet foreigners too often though.
iwona 12 | 542  
3 Sep 2006 /  #6
My brother in law is a black Zimbabwean who went to Poland to study. He was forced to leave halfway through his studies after being repeatedly spat at and abused for nothing other than his skin colour.

And in "tolerant" England quite a few black boys were killed by "tolerant white english" boys just for colour of their skin.
Cornelius  
3 Sep 2006 /  #7
And in "tolerant" England quite a few black boys were killed by "tolerant white english" boys just for colour of their skin.

BIG difference, in England it would be recognised as a racial assault and the perpetrators treated that bit harsher because of it.

In England if you are spat at and called something racist you could phone the police and they would be arrested and subject to criminal proceedings, in Poland, nothing, because Poland doesn't recognise racially motivated assault/behaviour as being a criminal offence.

Again, I would strongly recommend avoiding Poland like the plague unless you are prepared to tolerate unbridled racial hatred and have no protection from the police there.

I'm not saying that every place in Poland is a melting pot of skinhead bigots. All I am trying to point out is that it IS a big problem in many parts of Poland and that the authorities there will do nothing to help you if are unlucky enough to fall victim to racists there.
IndianPolishGurl  
3 Sep 2006 /  #8
I'm not saying that every place in Poland is a melting pot of skinhead bigots

it sure sounds like that is what you are saying...

just explain something to me then... why do I not get spat on in Poland? I look more indian than polish... why does my dad get treated with more respect in poland than in in england or australia (and even the united states where we live for now)... where in these countries he is viewed as "another indian invading the country"... hmmm? Now it looks like my mom is "another polish invading the country" when in England... well... thats realllly nice of u British "unracist" "accepting" "civil" "loving" "of perfection" humans beings....
Cornelius  
3 Sep 2006 /  #9
it sure sounds like that is what you are saying...

Well I'm not. It certainly appears to be quite a prevalent problem, but I have met sufficient Polish people (and am not stupid enough) to think that every Polish person is like that.

Immigration in England has been mismanaged, our governments incompetence has provided a great deal of fuel for bigotry, racism and prejudice. While the majority of us live in peace, side by side, the once almost non visible minority of racists are beginning to fall within the line of vision of the populace.

why does my dad get treated with more respect in poland than in in england or australia

England isn't the friendliest of places, thats not down to peoples skin colour, unfortunately its our nature (in London anyway!!)
opts 10 | 260  
3 Sep 2006 /  #10
Three years ago, I visited China.

In Shanghai, China, I saw an interracial couple, white women and a black man walking on the street. Almost everyone on the street stopped and starred at the couple.

While visiting smaller towns in China, people starred at me. I am white, born in Poland.
On couple occasions, Chinese women with their kids would come up to me, wanting to take a picture of me with their kids. J

I felt like I was on display. I do not think that Chinese were being racist. I was an anomaly to them.

You will be noticed in Poland; maybe people will stare at you, because you are black. It doesn't mean that they are prejudice. You might encounter some prejudice. (you encounter prejudice in US)

About couple months ago, a co-worker of mine, who is black, told me that his brother just returned from Zakopane, Poland and that his brother had a lot of fun.
truebrit 3 | 196  
3 Sep 2006 /  #11
To be fair to England it is the 4th most crowded nation in the world.In many countries people are more racist and less tolerant but they do not live closely together like in the UK so there is less chance of conflict.

And in "tolerant" England quite a few black boys were killed by "tolerant white english" boys just for colour of their skin.

Iwona you will find that in 80% of these crimes it was black boys being killed by other black boys - sometimes racist (eg Africans killed by Carribeans or British blacks).

I remember how the Russian people thought they were very tolerant before any black people lived in their country.Now there are some black people there and it has unleashed a lot of racist violence(including many murders).
krysia 23 | 3,057  
3 Sep 2006 /  #12
Go to poland. It's a beautiful country. You won't regret it.
But...smile at the people there when they look at you. Some have never seen a black person, only on TV and they might feel scared. Once they see you are not that bad, they will accept you more.
guess  
3 Sep 2006 /  #13
Some have never seen a black person, only on TV and they might feel scared.

Are you serious? Scared of what, UFO? lol
Cornelius  
3 Sep 2006 /  #15
Totally, the fact that so many millions of people from all over live in London (which is horrifically overcrowded) in comparative peace is testament to our tolerance.
Go the Orly  
14 Sep 2006 /  #16
I'm curious, how much Black people are in Poland? Someone told me there wouldn't be much more than 10 but there must be more then that.
lef 11 | 478  
14 Sep 2006 /  #17
So I would say that u will be noticed... yes... but its not bad, its more like they'll be saying how exotic u look

This is a biased and not frank statement, because you are darked skinned, doesn"t mean that black is beautiful...The true is that most poles treat black people as inferior... if you want to upset your mother or father go out with a black person... This may sound hard but it is the truth.
Shelley  
14 Sep 2006 /  #18
I remember I was 6 before I saw a black person - I just stared and pointed - but thats a 6 year old - look at the UK now and big muli-cultural melting pot!!!!!
sarah  
14 Sep 2006 /  #19
Shelley i was brought up into this big multi - cultural melting pot, i no no differnece now :)
Marzena 2 | 122  
14 Sep 2006 /  #20
Let's not get offended with criticism. I think that Polish people are quite divided as far as racism goes. There are some people who have outdated stereotypical opinions, but aren't harmful, and there are those who are really curious and excited to see a foreigner in Poland, and these people are the majority. There was one black person in my university in ToruĊ„, and everybody loved him and we were so proud that he chose to come to Poland and to our university.

However, it takes one stupid, ignorant fuck-up to ruin everything. And there are also such people - racist, anti-Semits and such (and radio maryja is just making things go over the edge here). And unfortunately, Polish legal system is not well prepared to deal with racism and discrimination, I suppose it was never an issue, since there were no foreigners there anyway.

If I was a foreigner in Poland, especially of different race, I would kind of check out which places are better then others and find some kind of safety net, in case something does happen. Also, it's good to have some Polish friends who can explain things to you and share insider's tips.
Robo  
14 Sep 2006 /  #21
Also, it's good to have some Polish friends who can explain things to you and share insider's tips.

Sounds a little like in Russia -- connection is everything. If you don't know the right person you can get robbed or mugged on the streets.
Marzena 2 | 122  
14 Sep 2006 /  #22
Connections are not EVERYTHING, but they are SOMETHING wherever you go. And what's the sudden comparison with Russia, aren't there other places in the world??
Robo  
14 Sep 2006 /  #23
I compared it to Russia because I know both Poland and Russia quite well. In Russia everything is divided into "territories" -- when you enter such "territory" you'd better know the person and pay them to "protect" you; otherwise you may get into trouble. Especially in the business world.
Marzena 2 | 122  
14 Sep 2006 /  #24
wow, that's pretty fucked up, but I don't think it's the same in Poland, but I have no idea about the business world.
Robo  
14 Sep 2006 /  #25
Yep, the business world in the Eastern Europe is harsh. Not for nice girls...:)
Marzena 2 | 122  
14 Sep 2006 /  #26
And what is THAT supposed to mean???
Robo  
14 Sep 2006 /  #27
Nothing - just saying in general one should be quite tough to do business in these countries because of many social and political obstacles etc. I don't think you are "a nice girl" - I would hire you if I had a chance 'cause you have the idea.
Marzena 2 | 122  
14 Sep 2006 /  #28
Yes, from the things I can deduce myself it seems like although there are some extra political barriers, the competition isn't as tough as elsewhere (although business is political everywhere). But I bet that at times doing business becomes a nerve-wrecking and human-origins-questioning experience.

I suppose it's a compliment that I'm not a "nice girl", which I agree with by the way hehe. And thanks for the job offer, I will keep it in mind in case my career plans don't quite work out :).
polaca 1 | 76  
14 Sep 2006 /  #29
How is the atmosphere between blacks and everyone else? Do Polish women like black men??

I was very surprised when i went out last weekend.
I saw many black people in city centre and the hadnt any problem to find polish friends:)
Was very nice to see polish people so friendly :)
guest18  
14 Sep 2006 /  #30
I can't say much as far as racism in Poland goes but I can say that the polish people i have met have been pretty welcoming and nothing but respectful towards me. This matters because I myself am not polish nor do i look anything close to what a polish person looks like. One of my best friends(he's black)who is also good friends with my girlfriend (who is polish), is warmly welcomed and treated respectfully by my girlfriend's family, which all happen to be polish.

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