Poland – Children’s rights


Pillar I: The state’s duty to protect human rights

Planned changes in national legislation

Prevention of economic exploitation of children [page 12]

“Article 39 of the Convention on the Rights of the Child states that States Parties to the Convention “recognise the right of the child to be protected from economic exploitation and from performing any work that is likely to be hazardous or to interfere with the child’s education, or to be harmful to the child’s health or physical, mental, spiritual, moral or social development”… In turn, the freedom to employ individuals between the ages of 16 and 18 is limited by the provisions of the Ordinance of the Council of Ministers of 24 August 2004 listing jobs prohibited to young people and conditions of employment for some of these jobs.”

Amendment to the Act on Tourism Services [page 25]

“Plans are in store to undertake work on an amendment of the regulations on the provision of hotel services, with a view to introducing provisions related to the prevention of sexual exploitation of minors in hotel facilities (detailing the requirements for hotel regulations), as provided for in the Council of Europe Convention on the Protection of Children against Sexual Exploitation and Sexual Abuse.”

Appendix 1: International non-binding mechanisms and international legal framework in force in Poland in relation to business and human rights

International non-binding mechanisms

“(…)4. Children’s Rights and Business Principles: a set of guidelines for the wide-ranging rights of children prepared in 2012 by, among others, UNICEF and the Global Compact”



2. Ministry of Development Funds and Regional Policy

Another area in which ESF+ (European Social Fund +) support will be implemented is care for the youngest children. Ensuring greater availability of care facilities for children below the age of three is one of the key instruments influencing the professional situation of parents and carers, especially women, who are most often responsible for childcare. Increasing the reach of care institutions therefore has a positive impact on the issue of equal opportunities in the labour market. For this reason, ESF+ resources will be used to finance establishment and operation of nurseries, child clubs and day carers as well as activities ensuring high quality of care (such as trainings for personnel of care institutions). – page 7

4. Ministry of Family and Social Policy

The first Polish Strategy for Persons with Disabilities 2021–2030

The scope of the regulation will include, among others, the introduction of provisions aimed at facilitating access to buildings and related facilities by persons with various types of disabilities, which will certainly exert an additional positive impact on other social groups such as older persons, carers with young children or persons with temporary motor dysfunctions. – page 14

Amendment to the Act on hotel services and tour managers and tourist guides services

Work is planned to amend the regulations on the provision of hotel services in order to make the provisions relating to the prevention of sexual exploitation of minors in hotel establishments more specific. – page 14

Development programme for care institutions for children under the age of three TODDLER+

Care institutions for children below the age of three are one of the tools enabling employees to combine private and professional life. The instrument which increases their territorial and financial availability is the Ministry’s programme for the development of childcare institutions for children under the age of three TODDLER+. It is announced annually, starting from 2011 (annual programme). The programme allows for co-financing of two types of activities:

a) establishment of new care facilities,

b) operation of care facilities.

Since 2011, approximately 56,500 facilities have been established with the funds obtained from the programme, including 37,400 facilities in 2017-2019. It is estimated that about 17,200 care facilities will be established with the funds of the ‘TODDLER+’ 2020 programme. Moreover, according to the results of the competition of ‘TODDLER+’ 2021 edition, the funds earmarked for the establishment of care facilities will make it possible to create about 25,000 such facilities. The programme is to be continued in the coming years. – page 20

Implementation of Directive (EU)2019/1158 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 20 June 2019 on work-life balance for parents and carers and repealing Council Directive 2010/18/EU

Following the entry into force of Directive (EU) 2019/1158 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 20 June 2019 on work-life balance for parents and carers and repealing Council Directive 2010/18/EU, it will be necessary to make systemic changes to Chapter 8 of the Labour Code on employees’ rights related to parenthood in the context of the implementation of the provisions of this Directive into Polish labour law. At that point, further solutions will be considered to facilitate achieving work-life balance by employees. The deadline for implementing the Directive into national legal systems has been set for 2 August 2022. – page 21

12. Public Procurement Office

The new Public Procurement Law (Journal of Laws of 2021, items 1129 and 1598)

Article 104 on the possibility of direct reference by the contracting body to a specific label in the description of the subject-matter of the contract, the description of the contract award criteria or in the contract performance requirements in order to highlight the specific characteristics of the contract (including social ones). Labels by means of which contracting bodies may specify requirements connected with the pursuit of social objectives in the description of the subject-matter of the contract, the contract award criteria and the contract performance requirements , in the criteria on which their award to certain products and services is based, refer, inter alia, to compliance with social and economic rights, such as … non-use of child labour, …. – page 34

Statutory tasks

– issuing and revoking permission for a child to perform work or engage in other gainful activity until they reach the age of 16; – page 35

Appendix 2 (information of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs)



– cooperate with reliable partners whose reliability, including in the area of respect for human rights, has been checked using available instruments such as verification by specialised economic bodies. Particular attention should be paid to respect for human rights in the context of forced and bonded labour and child labour in the supply chain. – page 47