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House of Lords committee criticises move towards ‘greater social segregation within faith schools’

A House of Lords committee has expressed concern that Government proposals to lift the cap on faith-based admissions ‘could cause greater social segregation within faith schools’. In a report, published by the Citizenship and Civic Engagement Committee, the peers also praise Ofsted for ‘sanction[ing] schools which fail to teach about LGBT people’, voices support for […]

Welsh Government announces plans to introduce home use of abortion pills

Vaughan Gething, the Welsh Health Secretary, has announced that he has instructed officials to investigate the legislative changes needed to allow women to take abortion pills in the safety and comfort of their own homes, rather than being required to make multiple trips to a hospital or clinic. Humanists UK welcomes this announcement, which represents […]

Humanists UK meets with Lead Commissioner for Countering Extremism

Humanists UK staff met yesterday with Sara Khan, the newly appointed lead Commissioner for Countering Extremism, to discuss the work of Humanists UK on related issues and the remit of the Commission going forward. Discussions focused on the work of Humanists UK in identifying and challenging extremist narratives in the UK, which spans across many […]

Weak response from UK Government on recognition of abortion in Northern Ireland

Humanists UK has expressed dismay that the eighth periodic report from the UK to the UN Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW) glosses over violations relating to abortion access and LGBT rights in Northern Ireland. Humanists UK, which has campaigned for the decriminalisation of abortion and the recognition of same-sex marriages in […]

Humanists UK calls for an end to NHS homeopathy funding in the west of England

Humanists UK has responded to a joint consultation held by the Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) for Bristol, North Somerset, and South Gloucestershire, calling for an end to the funding of homeopathic treatments on the NHS. This consultation follows a similar one held by the CCG in the summer of 2017, and the recommendation of the […]

‘Do No Harm’: Henry Marsh gives the 2018 Voltaire Lecture

Yesterday an audience of almost 900 people turned out at the Camden Centre in London to hear the 2018 Voltaire Lecture, which was given by best-selling author, renowned neurosurgeon, and Humanists UK patron Dr Henry Marsh. As per tradition, the Voltaire Lecture was chaired by the President of Humanists UK, comedian and author Shappi Khorsandi. […]

Ealing Council introduces first ‘buffer zone’ around abortion clinic

Ealing Council has voted unanimously in favour of introducing a Public Spaces Protection Order (PSPO) in the vicinity of a Marie Stopes abortion clinic to prevent anti-choice activists from harassing and intimidating users and staff. Councillors agreed with the conclusion of a report by the council’s community safety team that these activities had a detrimental […]

Success! Jersey adopts opt-out organ donation system

The States of Jersey Assembly has today passed legislation adopting a ‘soft opt-out’ system for organ donation on the island, similar to the system which has operated in Wales since 2015. This means a deceased person will be assumed to have consented to organ donation unless they have previously opted out and their family members provide […]

Government scraps plans to regulate part-time religious schools following religious lobbying

Following intensive lobbying by religious organisations, including the Archbishop of Canterbury, the Government has decided to scrap plans to regulate out-of-settings such as madrassas and yeshivas. The announcement comes in the Department for Education’s formal response to a consultation held on the proposals in 2015/16, and states that ‘a voluntary code of practice’ for out-of-school […]

Home to vote: Irish citizens urged to travel for abortion referendum

Northern Ireland Humanists and Humanists UK are encouraging all Republic of Ireland citizens living in the UK to travel to Ireland to vote in the upcoming referendum on the repeal of the controversial Eighth Amendment to the Republic of Ireland constitution on Friday 25 May. The repeal of the Eighth Amendment would remove one of […]

Belfast City Council passes motion supporting decriminalisation of abortion

Last night, Belfast City Council passed a motion to supporting decriminalisation of abortion and condemning the arrest and prosecution of women who use online abortion pills. The motion, which was proposed by councillors from Sinn Fein and the Alliance Party, passed by 34 votes to 16 with five abstentions. Humanists UK, which is intervening in […]

Distinguished writers and academics appointed patrons of Humanists UK

Writers and academics Professor Timothy Garton-Ash, Professor John Worrall, Dr Helen Czerski, and Dr Kate Fox have all been appointed as patrons of Humanists UK in recognition of their considerable contributions to culture and human understanding. They join a stable of over 170 other high-profile figures from the worlds of art, science, music, comedy, broadcasting, […]

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