Equality and discrimination

Humanists support equality and oppose discrimination, and have been deeply involved in campaigning against discrimination, from homophobia to racism, for decades.

Since the late 1990s in particular, legislation, regulation and active measures around equalities and anti-discrimination has seen radical changes. Three new equality ‘strands’ of religion or belief, sexual orientation and age have joined gender, race and disability as protected equality areas in law.

Equality issues include:

Single Equality Act 2009, which needs improving to tackle discrimination and avoid giving more privileges to religion.

Humanist Chaplains, who do not receive any public funding, unlike religious chaplains.

Marriage Laws, which discriminate against same-sex couples and Humanist weddings.

Read more about the British Humanist Association (BHA) campaigns for Equality.

Equality in West Sussex

Mid Sussex District Council responded positively to an inquiry regarding their Equality policies and practices. You can read more in the forum.

Crawley Borough Council were asked about their Equality policies and practices, including contracting out services to religious organisations. You can read more in the forum.

Our local development volunteer Andrew Edmondson attended a workshop/consultation run by West Sussex County Council (WSCC) in 2008. This was to give "faith" groups input into the services provided by WSCC. There was supposed to be a follow-up meeting to deal specifically with religious matters, which were entirely ignored at the workshop. There has been no such follow-up meeting. Read more in the forum.

WSCC have had a fast turnover of personnel, making it difficult to obtain responses to emails regarding their Equality policies and practices.

Our local development volunteer Andrew Edmondson represented the BHA at a conference on the new so-called Sprituality Strategy, hosted by the NHS Sussex Partnership. He met with several West Sussex chaplains and put the case for inclusion of Humanist chaplains. sent extensive feedback to the authors of the new strategy. You can read more about this coference and the spirituality strategy in the forum.

West Sussex Humanists would like to hear from any resident who is concerned about any issue regarding equality or discdrimination in their area. Email your local representative (see Local Groups) or Andrew Edmondson or make a post in the forum.


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Remembrance Sunday Campaign

The Chichester Observer made a video and wrote an article covering the laying of a Humanist wreath after the main religious ceremony. A transcript of the speech can be downloaded here.

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