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Stephen Evans

Campaigns Director, National Secular Society

Campaigns Manager, National Secular Society

Intolerant Religion Mustn't Dictate England's Education Policy

The time has come to strip organised religion of the privilege of being allowed to act as gatekeepers to publicly funded services. Unfair religiously discriminatory admissions arrangements need to be consigned to history and the whole role of religion in modern schooling revaluated.
24/07/2017 16:31 BST

We Need To Defend Both Our Lives And Our Way Of Life

Terrorist atrocities have a way of bringing the nation together, albeit temporarily. We need a glue to keep us together. Political leaders and civil society must work together in building a more assertive culture that robustly, actively and unashamedly promotes democratic values such as the separation of religion and state, the rule of law, human rights and equal treatment. In that way, secularism can protect us all.
07/06/2017 11:35 BST

Time To Put The Christian Persecution Myth To Bed

For years a small yet vocal minority of committed Christians have sought to perpetuate the myth that Christians in the UK are being persecuted for their beliefs and that UK equality law 'marginalises' them. So successful have they been in promulgating this myth, that the Equality and Human Rights Commission launched a major program of research to assess the effectiveness of the legal framework relating to religion or belief.
12/12/2016 15:28 GMT

Why The Ashers Bakery 'Gay Cake' Ruling Was Reasonable

Recent decades have seen great strides in equality and anti-discrimination legislation. Perhaps the most regrettable outcome of this ruling is that it will be used as a rallying cry for religious exemptions and the rolling back of equality law. Britain is better for our equality laws, it's imperative that we defend them.
01/11/2016 13:35 GMT

Inclusive Education: Divisive Faith Schools Are The Elephant In The Room

There's nothing anti-religious about advocating for secular schools that are open, inclusive and equally welcoming to all children, whatever their religion and belief backgrounds. Religion is fine for those that want it, but Britain's rapidly changing religious landscape screams for the scaling back of religious control of the classroom.
30/09/2016 16:40 BST

Facilitating More Religious Segregation In Faith Schools Can Only Harm Social Cohesion

In a move devoid of any common sense, Theresa May's government looks set to capitulate to the demands of religious groups by relaxing admissions rules for faith-based academies, allowing them to select all pupils along religious lines. It's hard to think of a more retrograde policy than the facilitation of greater religious segregation of children and young people in our education system.
09/09/2016 14:30 BST

In Modern Britain, Tradition Is No Reason to Cling to Religious Privilege

Despite the vast majority of Brits being secular in outlook and largely indifferent to religion, our political structures and institutions have failed to keep pace with changing demographics. This leaves the privileged position of the established Church looking increasingly incongruous with the reality of modern life.
26/05/2016 17:20 BST

A 'Duty Of Reasonable Accommodation' Is An Unreasonable Proposition

The UK has some of the most comprehensive anti-discrimination laws in the world. Britain is rightly regarded globally as a tolerant nation; one where everyone, within reasonable limits, can enjoy freedom of religion or belief and is legally protected from discrimination on the grounds of their religion or belief...
19/10/2015 10:57 BST

Christians Shouldn't Put Self-Interest Above Britain's Need to Better Integrate

Both the Anglican and Catholic Churches have long been able to use publicly funded schools to inculcate children into their religious traditions. Their reluctance to let go of that privilege is understandable. But for the sake of young people's future, people of all faiths should accept that faith-based education isn't in Britain's best interest.
27/07/2015 11:24 BST

Faith Schools: Education's Sacred Cow

We've almost won the argument on compulsory worship, let's just hope we don't have to wait so long for people to finally admit that organising education around parents' religious beliefs really isn't the greatest idea.
17/06/2015 17:04 BST

Teachers Shouldn't Be the Victims of Religious Discrimination

Parents with children at a primary school East Sussex expressed outrage this week, when it became clear that the school's popular headteacher, who was drafted in to save the failing primary, could not stay on permanently because he isn't Roman Catholic. The school of course, is a faith school.
15/09/2014 15:12 BST

Principles Of Secularism And Equality Must Be Defended

The law has until now been very clear in this area and the courts have for the most part been successful in striking a fair balance. Attempts to tip the balance in favour of Christians, or any other religious group, must be resisted.
21/08/2014 16:56 BST

Time to End Compulsory Worship In Schools

Removing the collective worship requirement is not a call to jettison all trace of religion from schools... Legally imposing a daily act of worship, in which pupils by law are required to "take part", goes beyond the legitimate function of the state and violates the human right of freedom of belief for children and young people.
10/07/2014 17:13 BST