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Newsline 16 June 2017

Tim Farron's decision to stand down as Lib Dem leader and widespread public hostility to the Government's deal with the DUP creationists again demonstrates that religion and politics don't mix well.

Secularism defends the right to practise a religion but insists that governments makes rational and secular policy decisions, without reference to anyone's interpretation of Holy Scripture. The need for a secular approach to politics in Britain's pluralistic society is clear. If you support our work for the separation of religion and state and equal respect for everyone's human rights, please make a donation today – and we'll put your principles into action.

Was Tim Farron a secularist?

Was Tim Farron a secularist?

Opinion | Thu, 15 Jun 2017

Tim Farron was a classic secularist, but found himself unable to reconcile his personal faith and his party's socially liberal positions and made his own choice, argues Terry Sanderson.

Abortion ruling is a missed opportunity to recognise the disparity in women’s reproductive health rights across the UK

Abortion ruling is a missed opportunity to recognise the disparity in women’s reproductive health rights across the UK

Opinion | Thu, 15 Jun 2017

Ensuring that NHS abortion services are made available, free of charge, to UK citizens travelling from Northern Ireland would be a way of mitigating the harm caused by a disparity in women's reproductive health rights across the UK, argues Dr Antony Lempert.

Scottish care provider’s decision to drop faith test should prompt a rethink over equality exceptions

Scottish care provider’s decision to drop faith test should prompt a rethink over equality exceptions

Opinion | Tue, 13 Jun 2017

When religious organisations are delivering state-funded public services they should neither discriminate nor proselytize – argues Stephen Evans, looking at the case of CrossReach and its implications.

“Glastonbury of Freethinkers”: conference on freedom of conscience and expression

“Glastonbury of Freethinkers”: conference on freedom of conscience and expression

Opinion | Mon, 12 Jun 2017

Saturday 22 – Monday 24 July will see activists from around the world gather for a weekend of discussions and debates on freedom of conscience and expression in the 21st century. Maryam Namazie tells us why it is such an important event.

Leaders claim freedom of religion is unaffected after Samoa becomes a “Christian state”

Leaders claim freedom of religion is unaffected after Samoa becomes a “Christian state”

News | Thu, 15 Jun 2017

The island nation Samoa has amended its constitution to proclaim itself a "Christian state".

People of faith should be welcome in politics – but religion is not a ‘get out of jail free’ card

People of faith should be welcome in politics – but religion is not a ‘get out of jail free’ card

Niamh Ní Mhaoileoin - Left Foot Forward

People of all faiths and none contribute to our politics and society. But in a secular democracy, faith isn't a get out of jail free card. If your faith is at odds with the policies of your party, then voters are entitled to question how you align the two.

In defense of secularism: Learn from thy enemy, shun racism and sectarianism

In defense of secularism: Learn from thy enemy, shun racism and sectarianism

Ahmad Al-Sarraf - The Arab Times

Why secular democracies protect religious pluralism: they don't care about the beliefs of other people or their religions. Secularism is not considered infidelity or heresy or degradation or disintegration, but means freedom of belief and non-interference of the state in the religious practices of citizens and residents.

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