BRUSSELS -- The European Parliament has overwhelmingly adopted a resolution declaring the entire 27-member European Union a "freedom zone" for LGBTQ2S+ people, an effort to push back on rising homophobia in Poland and elsewhere.

The parliament announced Thursday that there were 492 ballots in favour of the resolution and 141 against in a vote that came after a debate in a session of parliament in Brussels on Wednesday.

The resolution came largely in reaction to developments over the past two years in Poland, where many local communities have adopted largely symbolic resolutions declaring themselves free of what conservative authorities have been calling "LGBT ideology."

These towns say they are seeking to protect traditional families based on unions of men and women, but LGBTQ2S+ rights activists say the designations are discriminatory and make gays and lesbians feel unwelcome. The areas have come to be colloquially known as "LGBT-free zones."

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