It’s Day Two of Pride Month. In Toronto, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is meeting with the leader of Poland, a country with one of the worst records in Europe for LGBTQ rights. In Winnipeg, Pierre Poilievre dodged a question about whether he will march in a Pride Parade.

Mr. Trudeau met in downtown Toronto with Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki for a bilateral meeting, press conference and luncheon. Deputy Prime Minister Chrystia Freeland was also on hand for the bilateral meeting and midday meal.

This year, the European chapter of the International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans and Intersex Association, known as ILGA, ranked Poland as one of the worst places in Europe to live for queer people. The organization ranked the country 42 out of 49 – behind Hungary, Romania and Bulgaria, but ahead of Belarus, Russia and Turkey.

Mr. Morawiecki’s political party has called out LGBTQ rights as “an attack on the family and children” and turned a blind eye to municipalities and regions declaring themselves “LGBT-free zones,” reports The Canadian Press.

According to Amnesty International, at the end of 2022, 79 Polish administrative units still declared themselves “LGBT-free zones.” More had previously made the same declaration but were forced to revoke those declarations after pressure from civil society and the European Commission.

Last month, Mr. Trudeau publicly challenged Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni on ”some of the positioning that Italy is taking in terms of the LGBT rights.”

Italy ranks higher than Poland for LGBTQ rights but Mr. Trudeau made no similar comment at the top of his meeting with Mr. Morawiecki. Asked about his silence, Mr. Trudeau told The Globe and Mail’s Laura Stone Friday that he privately ”raised concerns that we have around some of the reports coming out of of Poland, around LGBT rights, around democracy.” He didn’t provide any specifics. The Globe will have more on the issue on its politics page later today.

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Meantime, Canada’s Official Opposition Leader declined to say Friday whether he will march in any Pride Parades this summer. Mr. Poilievre told a reporter that, “My purpose is to make Canada the freest country in the world. Freedom for everybody, including gays and lesbians, the freedom to marry, start a family, raise kids. Freedom from bigotry and bashing.”

“That’s why I wish everyone Happy Pride month because our freedom is something in which all of us can take pride,” Mr. Poilievre said without answering the reporter’s question about whether he would participate in a Pride Parade.

His office did not respond to The Globe’s subsequent requests to clarify whether he will march in a Pride Parade.

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The Prime Minister’s public itinerary details his three events with Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki in Toronto.


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John Ibbitson (The Globe and Mail) on David Johnston’s report on foreign interference keeping the issue front and centre: “Mr. Trudeau may have been hoping that, by the time Mr. Johnston submits his final report, the caravan will have moved on and the report will be ignored. He can forget about that. Mr. Johnston’s hearings and report will, if nothing else, keep the issue front and centre.”

The Editorial Board (The Globe and Mail) on the nanny state’s latest smoking rules: “Starting next year, every individual cigarette in a pack of smokes will have to carry a printed health warning... The Trudeau government is the first in the world to go this far, which isn’t surprising. Only a government as convinced of its own virtue as this one is would believe that literally putting words into people’s mouths was the logical next step in what we all recognize is an important public-health battle.”

Vicky Mochama (The Globe and Mail) on the about face from the inventers of AI: “How could the architects of a field that aims to make machines more human and as intelligent as we are have possibly foreseen that we might face terrifying human-like machines that are as intelligent as we are?”

Konrad Yakabuski (The Globe and Mail) on how the Pride flag flap shows why it is time to end public funding for Ontario Catholic schools: The York Catholic District School Board’s “refusal to hoist the Pride flag might not seem like a big deal amid the avalanche of gay-positive marketing that Canadians will see this month. But it should be the last straw for Ontarians who want their province’s public schools to celebrate equality rather than show contempt for it.”

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