March for a Secular Europe
Oppose special privileges for religion and people of faith
The state must not accommodate religious prejudice & intolerance
Saturday 17 September
Assemble 10.30 to 11am, Temple Place, London WC2. March departs 11.30am.
More info here: http://tinyurl.com/seculareurope
The march is supported by the British Humanist Association, the National Secular Society and the Peter Tatchell Foundation.
“We want a secular Europe, where no religion has special influence over government, where faith organisations are not above the law and where religious leaders cease attempting to impose their own often harsh, intolerant morality on everyone else,” said Peter Tatchell, Director the human rights advocacy organisation, the Peter Tatchell Foundation.
“Religion retains unjustified influence and power in the UK, with religious bodies having unique exemptions from our equality laws and with one-third of all schools being state-funded faith schools – a proportion that is likely to grow in the light of government policy to promote faith and free schools,” he added.
“Religious organisations spearheaded opposition to Britain’s gay equality laws, including the equalisation of the age of consent and the repeal of Section 28. Even now, most of them are campaigning to block same-sex marriage. They are the enemy of democracy and human rights.
“The Vatican has a malign influence over many European politicians and governments. It pressures them to oppose contraception, abortion, fertility treatment, gay equality, embryonic stem cell research and the right of people suffering with terminal illnesses to end their lives with dignity. It seeks to avoid compliance with the equality and anti-discrimination laws that apply to everyone else.
“Religious lobbyists, especially the Vatican, made sure that the proposed EU Constitution – and the now approved Lisbon Treaty (article 16c) - dangerously commits the European Union to ‘an open, transparent and regular dialogue with Churches and religious organisations’. Why should religious bodies receive this special treaty guarantee, which is denied to humanists and human rights advocates?” queried Mr Tatchell.
Watch Peter Tatchell’s video in support of a secular Europe: http://tinyurl.com/3le22vq
Join the Secular Europe facebook group:
Tweet in support of the protest on 17 September:
Protest Sat 17 Sep for a secular Europe - 10.30am, Temple Place, London WC2: http://tinyurl.com/seculareurope #seculareurope
Join us on Saturday 17 September:
- The March for a Secular Europe protests AGAINST:
The privileged status of the churches under Article 17 of the TFEU (Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union)
The privileged position of religious organisations in politics and the law
The special status of the Vatican in the United Nations
State-funded faith schools
The economic privilege and political influence of the Vatican
- The March for a Secular Europe protests FOR:
Freedom of religion, freedom of conscience and freedom of speech
Women’s equality and reproductive rights
Equal rights for LGBT people throughout the European Union
A secular Europe that does not kow-tow to religious pressure
One law for all, with no religious exemptions from the law
State neutrality in matters of religion and belief
Assemble (10.30-11am): Temple Place (Victoria Embankment)
March (11.30-12.30 am): Victoria Embankment, Bridge Street, Whitehall
Rally (12.30-2.30pm): Richmond Terrace, Whitehall (opposite Downing Street)