On 3 December 2010 the Polish Parliament passed an Act implementing EU Regulations Concerning Equal Treatment, namely Council Directive 86/613/EEC of 11 December 1986, Council Directive 2000/43/EC of 29 June 2000, Council Directive 2000/78/EC of 27 November 2000, Council Directive 2004/113/EC of 13 December 2004 and Directive 2006/54/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 5 July 2006.
The Act concerns the equal treatment of persons employed on the basis of a civil contract, e.g. contract for services, agency agreement or management contract. Such persons will enjoy some of the anti-discrimination protection as ordinary employees, provided, however the protection of employees under the Polish Labour Code will be wider. The Act provides for an exhaustive list of criteria on the grounds of which people may be discriminated against. This is in contrast to the Polish Labour Code which provides an open catalogue of prohibited discriminatory attributes. Under a civil law contract an individual must meet the burden of proof that he has been discriminated against, at which point the burden of rebuttal shifts to the other party of the contract.
Further, the Act amended the Polish Labour Code by introducing new Article 183b § 4. The article prescribes which actions of a church, religious association or religious organization acting as an employer will not be deemed illegal discrimination, even though they might be qualified as unequal treatment. It is permitted to treat employees differently due to their religion or beliefs if, in connection to the type and character of activity carried out by the church, religious association or religious organization, religion or belief is a substantial, reasonable and justified professional requirement.