NSS Opinion

Don’t sacrifice the principle of universal human rights to religious leaders

Don’t sacrifice the principle of universal human rights to religious leaders

Posted: Mon, 22 Nov 2021 by Megan Manson

A recent report on state-sanctioned killings of 'blasphemers' and 'apostates' suggests re-interpreting Islam as a solution rather than promoting universal human rights. Megan Manson argues this is the wrong approach. Read More »

Tags: Apostasy, Blasphemy

‘Inclusive language’ in the army is meaningless without inclusive culture

‘Inclusive language’ in the army is meaningless without inclusive culture

Posted: Mon, 08 Nov 2021 by Megan Manson

The Armed Forces must dismantle their institutional Christian privilege if they are truly committed to inclusivity, says Megan Manson. Read More »

Tags: Army, Remembrance

A vision for inclusive assemblies for all

A vision for inclusive assemblies for all

Posted: Fri, 05 Nov 2021 by Susan Garratt

Paul Stanley's work shows how much more inclusive and engaging school assemblies could be without the anachronistic legal requirement for religious worship, argues Sue Garratt. Read More »

Tags: Collective worship, Reviews

David Amess

Islamist extremism won’t be addressed by ignoring it

Posted: Thu, 21 Oct 2021 by Stephen Evans

The national conversation following the brutal killing of David Amess suggests an unwillingness to tackle the Islamic extremism behind it, argues Stephen Evans. Read More »

Tags: Extremism, Islamism

Why is the Catholic church allowed to hinder secondary school choice?

Why is the Catholic church allowed to hinder secondary school choice?

Posted: Thu, 21 Oct 2021 by Alastair Lichten

A case in Leicestershire shows the mess faith groups make of admissions and why secular accountability is necessary, argues Alastair Lichten. Read More »

Tags: Admissions, Faith schools

Religion shouldn’t frustrate assisted dying reform

Religion shouldn’t frustrate assisted dying reform

Posted: Thu, 14 Oct 2021 by Stephen Evans

Ahead of parliament's first consideration of assisted dying for six years, Stephen Evans calls on secularists to help ensure that religious objections don't stand in the way of necessary reform. Read More »

Tags: Assisted dying, Healthcare

Only secular law can bring justice to victims of mass clerical abuse in France

Only secular law can bring justice to victims of mass clerical abuse in France

Posted: Thu, 07 Oct 2021 by Keith Porteous Wood

Keith Porteous Wood says France's deference to the Catholic Church has obstructed justice for hundreds of thousands of abuse victims. Read More »

Tags: Catholic church, Child abuse, France

The Reluctant Gay Activist

Terry Sanderson’s memoir shows gay and secularist activism go hand in hand

Posted: Thu, 07 Oct 2021 by Helen Nicholls

Helen Nicholls reviews The Reluctant Gay Activist, the revised memoir of former NSS president Terry Sanderson. Read More »

Tags: LGBT, Reviews

Beware the government’s “new normal” of faith-based public services

Beware the government’s “new normal” of faith-based public services

Posted: Thu, 23 Sep 2021 by Megan Manson

A new government fund exclusively for faith groups threatens to embed religious privilege into public services, warns Megan Manson. Read More »

Tags: Opinion Out Loud, Public services

Schools should be liberated from the compulsion of worship

Schools should be liberated from the compulsion of worship

Posted: Thu, 16 Sep 2021 by Stephen Evans

As a bill to reform collective worship progresses in parliament, Stephen Evans argues that the time has come for lawmakers to recognise that laws mandating worship have no place in modern Britain. Read More »

Tags: Collective worship, Opinion Out Loud

Major reform is needed to ensure equality and fairness in marriage law

Major reform is needed to ensure equality and fairness in marriage law

Posted: Mon, 13 Sep 2021 by Russell Sandberg

Marriage law in England and Wales has failed to keep up with changing social realities. Russell Sandberg, the author of a new book on the topic, calls for change to put couples – not religious institutions – in control. Read More »

Tags: Marriage

Why can’t charity regulators tackle child abuse in faith groups?

Why can’t charity regulators tackle child abuse in faith groups?

Posted: Mon, 13 Sep 2021 by Megan Manson

An inquiry's report has highlighted the barriers which regulators face in dealing with child abuse in religious charities. Megan Manson says this should prompt reforms – including in how charity law deals with religion. Read More »

Tags: Charity, Child abuse

Baitul Futuh mosque

Indonesia mosque attack is a reminder that Ahmadi Muslims’ human rights need defending

Posted: Thu, 09 Sep 2021 by Kunwar Khuldune Shahid

After a mob attacked an Ahmadi Muslim mosque in Indonesia and anti-Ahmadi rallies took place in Pakistan, Kunwar Khuldune Shahid says the failure to defend this marginalised group has far-reaching implications. Read More »

Tags: Human rights, Islam

Upset girl

Fundamentalists are still being given too much of a free pass on child abuse

Posted: Wed, 08 Sep 2021 by Richard Scorer

The IICSA inquiry's latest report on child abuse in religious organisations and settings provides welcome evidence of significant problems – but is still too light on much-needed solutions, says Richard Scorer. Read More »

Tags: Child Abuse, Jehovah's Witnesses

Charles Bradlaugh in parliament

Charles Bradlaugh’s legacy is well worth celebrating

Posted: Wed, 01 Sep 2021 by Bob Forder

Bob Forder reflects on the key achievements of the NSS's founder, ahead of the restoration of his grave. Read More »

Tags: History

Jehovah's Witnesses hall

The child abuse inquiry has been too deferential to the Jehovah’s Witnesses

Posted: Wed, 25 Aug 2021 by Lloyd Evans

Next week the IICSA inquiry will publish a report into the Jehovah's Witnesses. This can only be damning. But the inquiry hasn't gathered the evidence needed to root out abuse within the organisation, writes Lloyd Evans. Read More »

Tags: Child Abuse, Jehovah's Witnesses

Girl at school gates

Locked in and locked out: how faith schools restrict families’ choices

Posted: Wed, 25 Aug 2021 by Alastair Lichten

State funding of faith schools means many families are left without suitable schools. The narrative that faith schools are justified on the grounds of choice should be confronted, says Alastair Lichten. Read More »

Tags: Admissions, Faith Schools

Afghan Taliban spokesman

The Taliban takeover is part of a wider threat to secular liberal democracy

Posted: Thu, 19 Aug 2021 by Stephen Evans

Stephen Evans argues that secular liberal democracy is the antidote to the totalitarian Islamism offered up by the Taliban – so we need to do a better job of defending it. Read More »

Tags: Religious freedom, Secularism

Children in class

It's time to move on from religious education

Posted: Tue, 17 Aug 2021 by Keith Sharpe

RE has become a subject in search of a purpose. There are better approaches to learning about the diversity of beliefs, and better uses of time than using outdated legislation to perpetuate it, says Keith Sharpe. Read More »

Tags: Education, Religious education

Michael Higgins

Heads of state shouldn’t have to swear religious oaths

Posted: Fri, 13 Aug 2021 by Chris Sloggett

A challenge to Ireland's religious presidential oath should be supported – and prompt questions across the Irish Sea, says Chris Sloggett. Read More »

Tags: Church & State, Head of state, Oath

Alan Griffin

The C of E has serious questions to answer over the death of a gay priest

Posted: Wed, 28 Jul 2021 by Keith Porteous Wood

A coroner's report has laid bare the Church of England's cruel and scandalous handling of the case of Alan Griffin, who killed himself following unfounded accusations of child exploitation, says Keith Porteous Wood. Read More »

Tags: Child Abuse, Church of England, LGBT rights

Schools aren’t there to save the church

Schools aren’t there to save the church

Posted: Thu, 22 Jul 2021 by Stephen Evans

The Church of England's new evangelical missional strategy should lead us to question its entitlement to proselytise in schools, argues Stephen Evans. Read More »

Tags: Collective Worship, Education, Evangelism, Faith schools, Opinion Out Loud, Religious education

Children in class

Will the government protect the ethos of secular schools?

Posted: Tue, 13 Jul 2021 by Alastair Lichten

The Department for Education's protections for the secular community ethos of non-faith academies are inadequate. This enables a consolidation of religious control and undermines accountability, argues Alastair Lichten. Read More »

Tags: Education, academisation

Woman in niqab Afghanistan

Defending Muslim women’s rights requires a willingness to criticise Islam

Posted: Tue, 13 Jul 2021 by Kunwar Khuldune Shahid

Islamic scripture is being used to justify attacks on women's rights in many countries. Secular law is a crucial defence – and shielding Islam from criticism undermines efforts to assert it, says Kunwar Khuldune Shahid. Read More »

Tags: Islam, Women's rights

Holding hands over Bible

Helping the public shouldn’t mean pushing religion on people

Posted: Mon, 12 Jul 2021 by Megan Manson

A parliamentary group has removed provisions in its 'faith covenant' that prevent faith groups from proselytising when delivering public services. This leaves vulnerable people open to exploitation, says Megan Manson. Read More »

Tags: Opinion Out Loud, Public services

Subscribe to RSS Feed Help for RSS Feeds