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National Secular Society

Challenging Religious Privilege


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Your daily media briefing - Thursday 21 November


In the Media is our daily collection of news and commentary related to secularism, available delivered to your inbox. You can also read the latest news and opinion and listen to our podcasts on our website.


Secularism in the media


School agrees to provide alternative to Christian assembly after parents’ legal challenge

A couple who threatened to take a school to the High Court over its religious assemblies have won their fight for alternative activities for their children.



Plan to open new Roman Catholic school in Peterborough submitted to council – NSS mentioned

A submission has formally been made to open a new Roman Catholic school in Peterborough in Cambridgeshire. The NSS's No More Faith Schools campaign is opposing the plans.

Peterborough Telegraph


Northern Ireland Office will consult on religious protections over same-sex marriage after threat by Ashers campaigners

The Northern Ireland Office has promised to consult the public on religious protections in relation to same sex marriage in Northern Ireland.

News Letter


Non-Christian couple in legal challenge over Northern Ireland school religious teaching

A non-Christian couple are taking legal action over their five-year-old daughter receiving religious teaching at her school in Northern Ireland.

Belfast Telegraph


‘Dear Lord, should religious groups be targeting young minds like this?’ – NSS mentioned

Andrew Penman says a promotional video for the Operation Christmas Child scheme, run by the evangelical charity Samaritan's Purse, is creepy. He also highlights NSS research on the unpopularity of collective worship.



Lib Dem manifesto includes some marriage reforms

The Liberal Democrats' election manifesto includes proposals to enable the Church of England and Church in Wales to conduct same-sex marriages and legal recognition of Humanist marriages. Elsewhere it would make all hate crimes aggravated offences.



Diane Abbott criticised for calling ‘homophobic’ Charedi Jewish activist a ‘community leader’

The shadow home secretary has been criticised for meeting an anti-LGBT education activist who joined 'homophobic' protests outside a school in Birmingham.



‘Does religion have a privileged status in the UK?’ - NSS mentioned

Rahila Gupta says the conflation of anti-racism and respect for religious rights has hampered the fight to keep religion out of the public square.



Church of England says Christians must repent for past antisemitism

The Church of England has said Christians must repent for centuries of antisemitism which ultimately led to the Holocaust in a new document. But the document has been criticised by the chief rabbi, who says it does not mention the continued "specific targeting" of Jews for conversion to Christianity.

The Guardian


Student who said Muslims should be 'wiped off face of earth' facing jail

A student who posted a video on Facebook saying Muslims should be "wiped off the face of the earth" is facing being jailed.



Hindu nationalists push to rename Taj Mahal city Agra as Agravan

Hardliners in India are pushing to rename the city of Agra, home to the Taj Mahal, on the grounds that it had an ancient Hindu name that predated its better-known Muslim heritage.

The Times (£)


Latest from the NSS


CoE trust to introduce alternative to worship after legal challenge

An academy trust will provide an inclusive alternative assembly for pupils withdrawn from collective worship after a legal challenge.


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