A significant part of our output, which often receives less attention, is our submissions to Government or international bodies' consultations. A selection of these submissions can be found below.
This consultation seeks views on the Scottish Government's vision and approach to ending the need for food banks as a primary response to food insecurity, and invites further suggestions on what more can be done to shape a national plan.
The National Secular Society responded warning about religious discrimination and proselytising conducted by some religious groups running food banks and debt advice services.
The closure of a non-faith school in Wigan would further reduce the already limited options for secular education. Our response argues that this would be unfair and discriminatory, and may breech the Council's duty to provide adequate school places.
The government will introduce a legislative ban on the practice of so-called conversion therapy. This consultation sought views on proposals on how to ban these practices, which particularly affect LGBT people.
The government consulted on proposals for meat from animals not stunned before slaughter to be accurately labelled. The proposals form part of a government call for evidence on reforms to food labelling to improve animal welfare and consumer choice.
We supported the proposals in our response, and called for exemptions allowing non-stun slaughter to be scrapped.
We've backed a proposal for a bill to enable competent adults who are terminally ill to be provided at their request with assistance to end their life, outlined in a consultation by Liam McArthur MSP.
We responded to the Education Committee supporting a private member bill to require the government to promote integrated education.
The Equality and Human Rights Commission consulted on what they should focus on in their strategic plan for 2022 to 2025 and how they might achieve this.
The NSS responded calling for an end to religious discrimination in schools to enhance fairness for children and young people, among other issues.
The Welsh Government consulted on how they can tackle inequalities experienced by LGBTQ+ communities, challenge discrimination, and create a society where LGBTQ+ people are safe to live and love authentically, openly and freely as themselves.
The NSS responded with recommendations for ending 'conversion therapy', tackling charities promoting anti-LGBT+ ideology, ensuring all schools are LGBT+ inclusive and challenging discrimination against LGBT+ people in employment in faith-based organisations.
The Office for National Statistics consulted on the release of census data and a proposed programme of analysis, to draw insights from that data.
The NSS's response calls for outputs on the Census 2021 to refer to "religion or belief" where possible and appropriate. We also call for the 'religion question', and subsequent outputs, in all future censuses to be phrased in a manner that is inclusive of the nonreligious.
Every few years the Law Commission undertakes a public consultation with a view to submitting to the Lord Chancellor a draft Programme of Law Reform.
The NSS has submitted five ideas for law reform:
- Abolish laws requiring collective worship in schools
- Remove 'the advancement of religion' as a charitable purpose
- Genital cutting – give greater protection for boys
- Remove religious exemptions to animal welfare laws regarding slaughter
- A legal framework for assisted dying