Posted: Fri, 23 Nov 2018 by Bob Forder
The film Peterloo is a reminder of the close links between the campaign for church-state separation and the push for a truly democratic society in the 19th century and beyond, writes Bob Forder.
Mike Leigh's keenly anticipated, ambitious and long film, Peterloo... Read More »
Posted: Thu, 22 Nov 2018 by Dr Antony Lempert
This week's developments on ritual genital cutting in the US and Denmark highlight the need to adopt a consistent application of human rights principles for everybody, regardless of gender, argues Dr Antony Lempert.
International legal conventions and agreements... Read More »
Posted: Wed, 14 Nov 2018 by Megan Manson
For Interfaith Week 2018, campaigns officer Megan Manson explains how the National Secular Society's work protects those who are religious as well as those who are not.
One of the most common misconceptions about the National Secular Society is that we are... Read More »
Posted: Mon, 12 Nov 2018 by Richard Scorer
The Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse has turned its attention to abuse in the Catholic Church's archdiocese of Birmingham. Richard Scorer delivered the following opening statement on behalf of several victims.
I represent 29 victims of sexual abuse... Read More »
Posted: Thu, 08 Nov 2018 by Emma Park
Emma Park says Ian McEwan's book and the film it has inspired prompt the questions of what the state should do when a young person's religion conflicts with their welfare, and how this affects religious freedom.
This review contains spoilers.
Does the state... Read More »
Posted: Fri, 26 Oct 2018 by Stephen Evans
Just as Irish citizens strike a blow for the right to freedom of expression, the European Court has fundamentally undermined it, argues Stephen Evans.
Irish voters decided this week to remove the 'crime' of blasphemy from its constitution. The majority of citizens,... Read More »
Posted: Thu, 18 Oct 2018 by Alastair Lichten
Posted: Fri, 12 Oct 2018 by Megan Manson
The revelation that Amazon funds extremist religious charities is the tip of the iceberg. Our charity system has deep problems, in part stemming from the presumption that religion is a public good, says Megan Manson.
On paper, it's hard to find fault with Amazon... Read More »
Posted: Fri, 05 Oct 2018 by Stephen Evans
The good deeds of faith-based organisations shouldn't lead us to turn a blind eye to their more ethically dubious practices, argues Stephen Evans.
Personal debt in the UK has reached epic proportions. Millions of households are living beyond their means with... Read More »
Posted: Wed, 03 Oct 2018 by Chris Sloggett
Campaigners' elation at the arrival of opposite-sex civil partnerships is understandable, says Chris Sloggett. But beware politicians using it to excuse their failure to loosen the Church of England's grip on marriage.
It's hard to begrudge Rebecca Steinfeld... Read More »
Posted: Thu, 27 Sep 2018 by Brian D. Earp
The principle of bodily autonomy is enough reason to end genital cutting, says Brian D. Earp. Allowing 'health benefits' to dictate its acceptability risks legitimising inconsistent, pseudo-scientific justifications. Read More »
Posted: Fri, 21 Sep 2018 by Chris Sloggett
As councils in north London, police in West Yorkshire and politicians in Westminster pander to religious groups' demands, Chris Sloggett says public bodies should stop taking the line of least resistance.
When you're up against someone who wants something,... Read More »
Posted: Fri, 21 Sep 2018 by Stephen Evans
China may be the most godless country in the world, but it is far from being a secular one. Stephen Evans says the intensifying religious persecution in the repressive state must be condemned.
China is by far the most godless country in the world. According... Read More »
Posted: Wed, 12 Sep 2018 by National Secular Society
There is an urgent case for resisting those who claim the mantle of 'religious freedom' without regard for others' rights and freedoms. Here's why our Secularism 2019 conference will be held under the tagline 'reclaiming religious freedom'.
"Everyone has the... Read More »
Posted: Fri, 24 Aug 2018 by Keith Porteous Wood
As the pope prepares to visit Ireland, NSS president Keith Porteous Wood says the international community must confront the Vatican over its shameful record on child abuse and demand action to bring secular justice.
Forty years ago, mass attendance per capita... Read More »
Posted: Sat, 11 Aug 2018 by Keith Porteous Wood
In this long read NSS president Keith Porteous Wood explains how all arms of the law co-operated to protect the now former bishop Peter Ball for decades and refutes claims that "it couldn't happen now".
Peter Ball started misusing his religious power to sexually... Read More »
Posted: Thu, 09 Aug 2018 by Richard Scorer
Richard Scorer says a damning report on two leading Catholic schools' approach to safeguarding is a reminder of the need for a law mandating the reporting of suspected child abuse to the secular authorities.
At the end of 2017 the Independent Inquiry into Child... Read More »
Posted: Thu, 02 Aug 2018 by Stephen Evans
As Denmark's ban on face coverings in public comes into force, Stephen Evans says standing up for fundamental rights and freedoms is the best way to push back against the oppression the burka represents.
Posted: Thu, 02 Aug 2018 by Chris Sloggett
A chaplain should not have been sacked for criticising Pride off campus, says Chris Sloggett. But universities can strike a blow for free speech and critical enquiry if they stop appointing religious representatives.
It is both impossible and undesirable to... Read More »
Posted: Sat, 28 Jul 2018 by Keith Porteous Wood
NSS president Keith Porteous Wood reflects on the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse's hearings into the case of the abusive bishop Peter Ball.
Under the guise of schemes with names such as "Give a Year to God", former Church of England bishop Peter... Read More »
Posted: Wed, 25 Jul 2018 by Basit Mahmood
Religious hardliners have pushed both frontrunners in Pakistan's elections to the right – and neither is prepared to stand up to them, says Basit Mahmood.
Change is in the air according to those campaigning in Pakistan's elections, as Imran Khan campaigns... Read More »
Posted: Mon, 23 Jul 2018 by Richard Scorer
Opening statement by lawyer Richard Scorer of Slater and Gordon, also an NSS vice president, at the IICSA inquiry's hearings into the case of Peter Ball, the former bishop of Gloucester.
Chair and members of the panel: Mr O'Donnell and I represent five survivors... Read More »
Posted: Fri, 20 Jul 2018 by Alastair Lichten
The Church of England's pretence that 'its' schools aren't faith schools is a dishonest attempt to avoid association with the unpopularity of faith-based schooling, and at odds with their actual policy, argues Alastair Lichten.
When the term 'faith school'... Read More »
Posted: Fri, 13 Jul 2018 by Stephen Evans
Integrating schools isn't a magic bullet to end sectarianism, but no serious attempt to address the issue can ignore the role of religiously segregated schools, argues Stephen Evans.
Last week, as Catholic worshippers were leaving Saturday evening Mass in Glasgow... Read More »
Posted: Thu, 12 Jul 2018 by A Parent
Sometimes concerns regarding religious interference in education can be easily resolved, simply through clear and polite conversations with the school. A parent shares her recent experiences working together with her school to stop educational trips to a church... Read More »