Tue, 22 May 2018

Acas launches new guidance on discrimination at work

The workplace arbitrator Acas has published new guidance on religion and belief for businesses and employees.

Facilities Management Journal

Ex-CofE priest admits historical child sex offences

A former Church of England priest has been jailed after pleading guilty to sex offences against a young girl.


‘Muslims should stop pushing this victimhood culture’

A study suggests Muslims are no more likely than the rest of the population to be stopped on suspicion of committing a crime. Jawad Iqbal criticises campaigners who "push a culture of victimhood and accuse forces of having an anti-Muslim agenda".

The Times (£)

‘Ireland’s abortion campaign has been revolutionary’

Lizzie O'Shea says the campaign to repeal the eighth amendment, which effectively bans abortion in Ireland, has been inspiring.

The Guardian

Danish minister questions whether Muslims should work during Ramadan

Denmark's minister of integration has suggested those fasting for Ramadan should take time off work "to avoid negative consequences for the rest of Danish society".

Sydney Morning Herald

Swedish girls fearing forced marriage or FGM told to hide spoon in underwear

A Swedish city is advising girls who fear being taken abroad for forced marriage or female genital mutilation to tuck a spoon in their underwear to set off airport metal detectors.


Mon, 21 May 2018

Welby: separation of church and state not a disaster

The archbishop of Canterbury has said disestablishment of the Church of England would not be a disaster, and removal of the church's privileges should be "a decision for parliament and people". Justin Welby was speaking as he prepared to preside over the royal wedding which took place on Saturday.

The Guardian

Lack of FGM convictions ‘shows UK law is flawed’

Britain is one of the only countries in Europe where nobody has been convicted of female genital mutilation, a report from the think tank Quilliam reveals today.

The Sunday Times (£)

Guernsey's parliament votes against proposal to legalise assisted dying

Guernsey's parliament has voted against a proposal to legalise assisted dying for some terminally ill people.

The Independent

Surrey Police and PCC double down and miss point on distribution of bibles – NSS mentioned

Surrey Police and its crime commissioner have defended distributing 1,000 bibles among its workforce after the NSS criticised the move. A Surrey Police spokesman said the force has recently launched a multi-faith chaplaincy business plan.

Get Surrey

C of E school set to close after diocese blocks secular trust’s potential takeover

A secular multi-academy trust has been blocked by a local diocese from taking over two Church of England primary schools in Surrey, one of which is now set to close.

Schools Week

‘Buffer zones around Glasgow abortion clinics are the right move’

Catriona Stewart says Glasgow City Council should create enforceable buffer zones around abortion clinics in the city.

Evening Times

Church of Scotland votes to allow ministers to conduct same-sex marriages

The Church of Scotland has moved a step closer to allowing same-sex marriage after it voted in favour of drafting new protocols.


SDLP gives members free vote on abortion

SDLP members have been allowed the freedom to vote as they see fit on abortion matters - even if it goes against the party's stated anti-choice position.

Belfast Telegraph

Ireland abortion referendum goes down to the wire

Polls for this Friday's referendum on legalising abortion in Ireland show support for the No campaign gaining ground, with the one in five voters still undecided holding the key to which side will win out.

The Week

DeVos wants taxpayer money for US religious schools

US secretary of education Betsy DeVos wants to lift constitutional restrictions on taxpayer money being used for religious education.


Fri, 18 May 2018

C of E urges government not to scrap civil partnerships

The Church of England is lobbying the government not to scrap civil partnerships. The church is concerned that the move would throw its stance on sexuality into disarray.

Christian Today

Deputy first minister praises Scotland’s Catholic schools

John Swinney, Scotland's cabinet secretary for education and deputy first minister, has praised Catholic schools in a speech to the Catholic Headteachers Association Scotland conference.

Scottish Catholic Observer

Archbishop of Canterbury presides over unveiling of terrorism memorial

Justin Welby has presided over a service where a memorial to British victims of terrorism overseas was unveiled. Politicians including Boris Johnson and Jeremy Corbyn were in attendance.

Mail Online

Conservatives in Birmingham criticise Islamic school that warned girls not to use tampons

Birmingham's shadow education chief has called for an Islamic faith school to be shut down following a catalogue of failure and negative headlines.

Birmingham Live

British Muslims write Telegraph letter opposing anti-Semitism

Prominent British Muslims have published an open letter in a full-page advert in The Telegraph urging other Muslims to call out anti-Semitism when they see it.

Jewish News

Oxford student society accused of bigotry against Ahmadis

The leaders of Oxford's Pakistan Society have been accused of "intolerance and bigotry" against the Ahmadi religious minority after they allegedly neglected to screen a documentary about a Nobel prize-winning physicist.


Australia’s PM receives religious freedom review

A government-appointed panel has handed Australia's prime minister a report on religious freedom that could trigger a new political debate over discrimination laws. The prime minister's office confirmed the report would not be made public today.

SBS News

Trump administration launches crackdown on abortion

The White House is expected to announce today that it is reviving a rule that bars groups who provide, discuss or refer patients for abortions from receiving federal family planning funds.


Ireland abortion campaign enters final week

There is just one week to go until Ireland votes on whether to repeal the eighth amendment to its constitution, which effectively bans abortion in almost all circumstances.


Thu, 17 May 2018

Guernsey begins assisted dying debate

The chief minister of Guernsey has called for some terminally-ill people to be given access to assisted dying as he opened a debate that could pave the way for euthanasia being legalised on the island.

The Guardian

Catholic Church objects to plans for shared school campus in north Lanarkshire

The Diocese of Motherwell has complained that plans for a joint campus between two schools will result in "a dilution of the unique ethos of the Catholic school".

Daily Record

Europe human rights chief says governments must invest more to tackle homophobia

In a message marking the International Day Against Homophobia, Biphobia and Transphobia, a European human rights commissioner has warned that governments must invest more in protecting LGBT+ rights.

Pink News

Religiosity a key reason why people oppose homosexuality

After decades of increases in popular LGBT acceptance, data suggests the change is slowing down. In 2010 figures suggested there was a large gap in attitudes between those who attended religious services regularly and those who were not religious.

Pink News

NSS doctor explains why he opposes infant genital cutting

Dr Anthony Lempert, a GP who is the chairman of the NSS's Secular Medical Forum, gave a talk on infant circumcision at a meeting of a humanist group on Monday. He explained why he opposed the practice.

East London & West Essex Guardian

Minister says government is “open-minded” about the future of civil partnerships

Penny Mordaunt, the minister for women and equalities, has said the government is "open minded" on the future of civil partnerships, after a document published in her name raised the prospect of scrapping them.

Pink News

‘What the JCHR found on free speech at universities’

Harriet Harman reflects on the findings of a recent review by the Joint Committee on Human Rights on free speech at universities as she prepares to lead a debate on the subject in Westminster Hall.

The Times (£)

SDLP ‘could face resignations’ if it liberalises approach to abortion

A former chair of Omagh council has warned of resignations from the SDLP's ranks over the leadership's support for a liberalisation of abortion policy. The party is preparing to meet on Saturday behind closed doors to debate a number of motions on abortion.

The Irish News

‘Marriage equality wasn't the end of the fight for equality for LGBTI Australians’

As Australia prepares to receive the final results of its religious freedom review, Lee Carnie says there is a "window of opportunity for Australia to move forward" on LGBT+ rights.

ABC News (Australia)

Anti-LGBT, scaremongering Christian speaker appointed to religious freedom commission in US

Tony Perkins has been made a member of the US Committee for International Religious Freedom.

The Daily Beast

Wed, 16 May 2018

Existence of faith schools contributes to lowering of pupil wellbeing, study finds

A study from the LSE has found that school choice – and the existence of academies, faith schools and private schools – encourages 'boring' teaching methods and lowers pupil wellbeing.


UK official ‘told gay asylum seeker to find religion and be cured'

A UK government official told a gay asylum seeker to find religion and stop being a lesbian, the seeker has alleged.

Gay Star News

School at heart of merger row in Isle of Man has “explicitly Christian values”, says minister

The "explicitly Christian values" of St Thomas' School on the Isle of Man make its curriculum different from that followed by pupils at other schools, a minister has said. The school is due to co-exist alongside a non-religious school from September.

IoM Today

Humanist chosen to chair group advising NHS on pastoral care

A humanist has been chosen to lead a national body supporting the development of pastoral and spiritual care in the NHS across England. The Network for Pastoral, Spiritual, and Religious Care in Health includes representatives of groups which represent various religions and beliefs.

Premier Christian Radio

Anglican churches in Ireland and Australia condemn same-sex marriage

Bishops in Ireland and Australia have issued separate statements making clear their Anglican churches will not accept same-sex marriage.

Anglican Communion News Service

Abortion in Ireland - what is the law?

A guide to the law on abortion in the Republic of Ireland, ahead of next week's referendum on the issue.


‘Misogyny, femicide and an unexpected abortion debate in Argentina’

Jordana Timerman says abortion has surprisingly become a political issue in Argentina, in the face of opposition from the Catholic Church.

The New York Times

Pope crisis talks with Chile bishops over abuse may lead to purge

Thirty-four Chilean bishops have been summoned to the Vatican over a cover-up of sexual abuse by clergy. This could prompt a purge of Chile's Catholic hierarchy.


Fact checker: Pence’s claim on religion in America

Glenn Kessler fact-checks Mike Pence's claim that "religion in America isn't receding – it's just the opposite".

The Washington Post

Tue, 15 May 2018

‘Government U-turn indicates the tide is turning against faith schools’ – by NSS chief executive

NSS CEO Stephen Evans says the government's U-turn on its manifesto promise to lift the 50% cap on faith-based admissions to new religious free schools is a positive development. But he adds that the expansion of faith schools is the wrong response to Britain's growing religious diversity.

The Huffington Post

Guernsey to vote on assisted dying

Guernsey's parliament is to debate whether to introduce assisted dying tomorrow.


Archbishop expected to be called to give evidence as inquiry probes child abuse at nuns’ home

A leader of the Catholic Church in Scotland is expected to be called to give evidence at the Scottish Child Abuse Inquiry.

Sunday Post

Legal challenge over home abortion drug plans begins in Scotland

A legal challenge over plans to allow pregnant women to take abortion -inducing medication at home began at the Court of Session in Edinburgh yesterday.

Daily Record

First mosque in Western Isles opens doors

The first mosque in the Western Isles has opened its doors, despite objections from the Free Church of Scotland (Continuing).

The Scotsman

Barring heterosexual couples from civil partnerships is discriminatory, court told

Preventing heterosexual couples from entering into civil partnerships is discriminatory and a disproportionate restriction on their right to family life, the supreme court has been told.

The Guardian

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