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85 countries ‘severely discriminate’ against the non-religious, 2017 Freedom of Thought Report finds

85 countries around the globe ‘exhibit severe discrimination against non-religious individuals’, with several having seen humanists and atheists murdered for their beliefs over the past year. Those are the top-line findings of the 2017 Freedom of Thought Report, published today by the International Humanist and Ethical Union (IHEU). Humanists UK is a member of IHEU and […]

Humanists UK asks Ofsted to take strong stance on faith schools with a sexist ethos

Following reports that at least one mixed-sex religious school unlawfully segregating girls and boys may be allowed by the Government to simply split into separate single-sex schools, Humanists UK has written to Ofsted to raise concerns about the impact that this may have on pupils’ education. In a judgment handed down by the Court of […]

Humanists celebrate end of NHS homeopathy prescriptions in England

Take action: sign our petition to Jeremy Hunt calling for the blacklisting of homeopathy on the NHS In reaction to the news that the board of NHS England has voted to defund homeopathy prescriptions, and recommended that Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt blacklist homeopathy from being provided on the NHS at all, Humanists UK Director of […]

Andrew Copson addresses Parliament’s human rights committee about free speech on campus

In the past five years, at least seven Humanist Students societies have been subjected to banning, censure, or disruption at universities around the UK, said Humanists UK Chief Executive Andrew Copson, addressing the Joint Committee on Human Rights in the UK Parliament on Wednesday afternoon. The session was convened to gather evidence on whether the […]

Response to Tim Farron’s speech on tolerance and the future of liberalism

On Tuesday night, former Leader of the Liberal Democrats Tim Farron gave a speech in which he stated that liberalism ‘is eating itself’ by being intolerant of Christianity. The content of his speech makes a number of bold claims for the status of religion in public life, but in doing so betrays a number of […]

Australian state becomes first to legalise assisted dying for terminally ill patients

Victoria, Australia’s second most populous state, has passed legislation legalising assisted dying for terminal patients who have less than six months to live. From 2019 onwards patients who have been resident in the state for over 12 months will be able to request a doctor to administer a lethal drug. Humanists UK hopes that the […]

Joan Bakewell wins Humanist of the Year 2017

This weekend, broadcaster and peer Joan Bakewell was named Humanists UK’s Humanist of the Year 2017 at an awards ceremony in London. Previous winners of the Humanists UK award include Pakistani human rights activist Gululai Ismail, biologists Richard Dawkins and Alice Roberts, novelists Terry Pratchett and Philip Pullman, and most recently Lord (Alf) Dubs, Joan’s […]

Success! Government announces review into buffer zones around abortion clinics

Home Secretary Amber Rudd has today announced a review into the behaviour of anti-choice campaigners outside English and Welsh abortion clinics, and whether further police and civil powers are needed to prevent the harassment and intimidation that has been occurring. This could potentially include buffer zones. The announcement represents a serious victory for the Back […]

Government commits to updated guidance on home education in light of concerns over unregistered religious schools

The Department for Education (DfE) will consult on new guidance around home education, it has been announced in Parliament. According to Education Minister Lord Agnew, the new guidance will aim to make clearer to councils what powers they currently have to check up on home education, as well as advise parents on their rights and […]

Faith schools teaching narrow, unaccredited ‘Religious Studies GCSE’ in defiance of DfE rules

In defiance of a Government requirement for GCSE Religious Studies (RS) to include the in-depth study of at least two religions, a number of faith schools are opting to teach a narrower ‘International GCSE’ course focusing study only on the religion of the school, it has been revealed. The International GCSE in Religious Studies, produced […]

Half of private faith schools judged as failing by inspectors

Almost half (49%) of private faith schools have been judged as failing by Ofsted due to concerns over leadership and the promotion of ‘British values’, new official statistics have revealed. Humanists UK, which campaigns for private faith schools to be held to higher standards, has stated that the new figures demonstrate the risks of allowing […]

Humanists UK mourns its patron, Sir Kenneth Stuart

The staff and trustees of Humanists UK were saddened to learn of the death of Sir Kenneth Stuart, the distinguished medical doctor and patron of Humanists UK for many years. He died on 11 November, aged 97. A Barbadian academic of global renown, Sir Kenneth led a life dedicated to promoting advances in human health […]

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