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Mass grave full of children's remains at Catholic home reveals atrocities on a massive scale

Mass grave full of children's remains at Catholic home reveals atrocities on a massive scale

Posted: Tue, 07 Mar 2017 15:59

With the latest revelations about human remains in an Irish Mother and Baby home, Keith Porteous Wood, executive director of the National Secular Society, seeks answers about how such atrocities could have happened on such a scale, and what can be done now.

A faith-based education system is deeply inefficient

A faith-based education system is deeply inefficient

Posted: Tue, 07 Mar 2017 12:27

Both the Government and the Labour Party have wilful blind spots around faith schools, and as the Government looks set to launch a new wave of faith schools amid an education funding crisis, how can such an inefficient system be justified?

Britain’s ‘Christian right’: seeking solace in a narrative of discrimination

Britain’s ‘Christian right’: seeking solace in a narrative of discrimination

Posted: Thu, 02 Mar 2017 11:21

The 'Christian right' in the UK may not be anywhere near as powerful as its US counterpart, but it still tries to exert influence on public policy, writes Steven Kettell.

Stop pharmacies refusing prescriptions for emergency contraception on religious grounds

Stop pharmacies refusing prescriptions for emergency contraception on religious grounds

Posted: Fri, 17 Feb 2017 11:19

With the regulator considering curtailing 'conscience' objections to contraception prescriptions, Keith Porteous Wood urges supporters to respond to the consultation in the interests of vulnerable patients.

A judge’s decision to separate a transgender parent from her Jewish Orthodox children was deeply misguided

A judge’s decision to separate a transgender parent from her Jewish Orthodox children was deeply misguided

Posted: Fri, 10 Feb 2017 09:58

The decision to separate a transgender parent from her children gets to the heart of why faith-based harm is perpetuated and is frequently unchallenged, writes Dr Antony Lempert.

It’s time for an end to special religious privileges: we need a secular state

It’s time for an end to special religious privileges: we need a secular state

Posted: Wed, 08 Feb 2017 10:32

The Commission on Religion and Belief in British Public Life set out 37 recommendations – which, argues Steven Kettell, are deeply problematic in a society where half the population say they have no religion.

President Trump: American theocrat

President Trump: American theocrat

Posted: Tue, 31 Jan 2017 11:04

Donald Trump may be America's latest 'atheist president', but his presidency has put Christian Nationalism at the heart of its policy agenda.

Faith schools mustn’t be allowed to stymie young people’s sexual health and well-being

Faith schools mustn’t be allowed to stymie young people’s sexual health and well-being

Posted: Thu, 12 Jan 2017 14:48

Political sensitivity about faith schools is getting in the way of providing evidence-based, age-appropriate sex and relationships education (SRE) to all children. We can't wait forever for the Government's proposals on SRE, writes Stephen Evans.

A faith ethos is no magic solution for improving schools

A faith ethos is no magic solution for improving schools

Posted: Sat, 07 Jan 2017 09:05

There are success stories and failures in schools of all types, including faith schools, despite what the churches would have people believe. NSS vice president Alistair McBay debunks the myth that 'faith school' is a byword for success.

Norway’s separation of Church and State: a work in progress

Norway’s separation of Church and State: a work in progress

Posted: Wed, 04 Jan 2017 15:37

Norway's supposed separation of Church and State, effective from 1 January 2017, is a very positive step, but it's still a work in progress, writes Keith Porteous Wood.

Sister Sarah Kuteh: up steps the next so called victim of ‘Christian persecution’

Sister Sarah Kuteh: up steps the next so called victim of ‘Christian persecution’

Posted: Wed, 14 Dec 2016 14:22

It has been another week in which we've seen Christians in the Middle East losing their lives to violence and persecution, but much media attention in the UK has instead focussed around the plight of a nurse, supposedly sacked for "offering to pray with her patients".

Sabbatarians have imposed their dogma on islanders for long enough, help them put a stop to it

Sabbatarians have imposed their dogma on islanders for long enough, help them put a stop to it

Posted: Thu, 08 Dec 2016 10:37

The National Secular Society is helping campaigners on the Isle of Lewis open a sports centre on a Sunday, currently blocked by a council who won't allow it on the Sabbath. It's hardly the first time Sabbatarians on Lewis have played this game.

The Casey Review lays bare the failure to integrate Muslim minorities

The Casey Review lays bare the failure to integrate Muslim minorities

Posted: Mon, 05 Dec 2016 16:32

Dame Louise Casey offers a damning critique of mass immigration undertaken without serious efforts to integrate new arrivals, but she shies away from properly tackling faith schools, and the problems she identifies may be intractable.

Clerics shouldn’t be the gatekeepers to publicly funded schools

Clerics shouldn’t be the gatekeepers to publicly funded schools

Posted: Fri, 25 Nov 2016 10:53

A progressive education policy would seek to break down barriers between people of different faiths and beliefs, not erect them, writes NSS campaigns director Stephen Evans.

Sharia reviews and the case for non-accommodation and non-regulation

Sharia reviews and the case for non-accommodation and non-regulation

Posted: Fri, 11 Nov 2016 11:12

Our legal system cannot be permitted to fracture into parallel codes for different religious groups. Sadikur Rahman writes on how to avoid accommodation with sharia while also protecting the rights and interests of Muslim women.

Protecting women’s rights is the priority, but that isn’t the only legitimate concern about sharia

Protecting women’s rights is the priority, but that isn’t the only legitimate concern about sharia

Posted: Thu, 03 Nov 2016 16:37

Gender inequality isn't the only problem with sharia councils, and non-Muslims have every right to object to the foundation of a parallel legal system in the UK, writes Benjamin Jones.

Saudi women’s rights activist arrested – days after Saudi Arabia returned to Human Rights Council

Saudi women’s rights activist arrested – days after Saudi Arabia returned to Human Rights Council

Posted: Thu, 03 Nov 2016 14:34

A leading women's rights activist, Mariam Nassir Al Oteebi, has been arrested in Saudi Arabia and languishes in prison, just days after the country was re-elected to the UN Human Rights Council, writes David van Rooyen.

Had the Ashers ‘gay cake’ ruling gone the other way it would have seriously undermined equality law

Had the Ashers ‘gay cake’ ruling gone the other way it would have seriously undermined equality law

Posted: Fri, 28 Oct 2016 11:57

Despite the outcry following this week's Ashers 'gay cake' ruling, Northern Ireland's Court of Appeal delivered a clear and logical judgment.

Review: The Battle for British Islam, by Sara Khan with Tony McMahon

Review: The Battle for British Islam, by Sara Khan with Tony McMahon

Posted: Thu, 27 Oct 2016 10:50

There are three million Muslims in the UK. The evidence shows they are becoming more religiously conservative, thousands are thought to have joined Islamic State; vast majorities would criminalise blasphemy and homosexuality. What hope is there?

Forced cutting of young boys’ genitals violates the most fundamental medical ethics

Forced cutting of young boys’ genitals violates the most fundamental medical ethics

Posted: Mon, 24 Oct 2016 15:39

Too often those who carry out forced cutting of young boys' genitals escape with gentle admonishment, rather than punishment commensurate with the severity of their actions, writes Dr Antony Lempert of the Secular Medical Forum.

The new UN Secretary General must not allow religion to override human rights

The new UN Secretary General must not allow religion to override human rights

Posted: Fri, 21 Oct 2016 10:18

UN Secretary General designate needs to ignore Catholic pressure to row back on Sexual and Reproductive Health Rights and Gay Rights, writes Keith Porteous Wood.

Advice for parents wanting to give the evangelical Operation Christmas Child shoebox scheme a wide berth

Advice for parents wanting to give the evangelical Operation Christmas Child shoebox scheme a wide berth

Posted: Wed, 12 Oct 2016 10:52

Alastair Lichten looks at the ethical, educational and efficiency case against the Samaritan's Purse Operation Christmas Child shoebox scheme.

The demonisation of Louis Smith: This is how a de facto blasphemy law works

The demonisation of Louis Smith: This is how a de facto blasphemy law works

Posted: Tue, 11 Oct 2016 20:25

The castigation of a British gymnast for 'mocking Islam' is illustrative of a troubling return of blasphemy, argues Stephen Evans.

Channel 4’s Dispatches reveals intimidating tactics of US-inspired anti-abortion campaigners

Channel 4’s Dispatches reveals intimidating tactics of US-inspired anti-abortion campaigners

Posted: Thu, 06 Oct 2016 13:14

Dr Antony Lempert of the Secular Medical Forum reacts to Channel 4 Dispatches' programme that showed the shock tactics UK anti-abortion campaigners are importing from America.

The biter bit: Church of England suffers from Chancel Repair Liability

The biter bit: Church of England suffers from Chancel Repair Liability

Posted: Wed, 05 Oct 2016 12:42

The legal requirement to repair church chancels has surprisingly started to impact the Church Commissioners. Here's what they did about it.

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