THE RIGHT TO BILINGUALISM - AGREEMENT OR CONFICT? TE REPORT ON THE RESEARCH ON BILINGUALISM AMONG BELORUSSIANS FROM THE EASTERN PODLASIE REGION (Polish title below)
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(Polish title: Prawo do dwujezycznosci - zgoda czy konfikt? Raport z badan dotyczacych dwujezycznosci osób pochodzenia bialoruskiego zamieszkujacych tereny wschodniego Podlasia). The right to bilingualism - this is one of the most important methods for national minorities to keep their own identity. Nowadays, this issue is regulated by national and ethnic minorities and regional language law (2005). This law is being seen as controversial in perception of many different groups - politicians, Polish society and even Belorussians from Podlasie. Some say that incorporation of this law is very expensive for the national budget and can lead to territorial disintegration and loss of sovereignty of Poland. It can cause ethnic conflicts or even social decomposition. Others want full civil rights and in their majority accept the introduction of double names of cities and villages. At the same time, those people express their disapproval for the introduction of the second, national language as an official language of communication in public offices on a local level.
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