Members of the political group of the Electoral Action of Poles in Lithuania (LLRA) have registered a new ethnic minority bill, which would allow broad official use of the minority language and bilingual signs, as well as put the state under the obligation to provide financial support to ethnic minorities.
Rita Tamašunienė, Valdemaras Tomaševskis
© DELFI / Valdas Kopūstas

The parliament had earlier discussed another bill drafted by the party, but after the LLRA left the ruling coalition in August, Parliamentary Speaker Loreta Graužinienė confirmed that the bill was not a priority in the parliamentary autumn plenary session.

In the new bill, the LLRA wants to allow broader use of minority languages. Under the draft, a person identifying with an ethnic minority could use his or her native language in public, verbal and written form, publicly provide signs, entries and other types of information in the language of the ethnic minority. They would also be able to give testimony and explanations in their mother tongue, submit applications and complaints, use the language in court.

In a municipal district where an ethnic minority makes up at least 10 percent of the population, public information about healthcare, public peace, personal safety, initial legal information and election information could be submitted in the language of the minority as well.

In such locations, street signs, names of public administration subjects and topographic signs could be provided in the relevant minority language next to the official language.

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