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Humanist and secularist wins at Autumn Conference 2018

March 11, 2019 8:11 PM

Autumn Conference 2018 in Brighton saw three important wins for humanist-secularist principles in Lib Dem policy.

HSLD was delighted to see three of its proposed amendments to policy motions adopted.

These amendments were about ensuring:

  • That the party doesn't forget that people with non-religious beliefs have the same rights and need the same protections as people with religious beliefs, in the UK and around the world;
  • and that our party's policy on caste discrimination is reaffirmed at a time when the government intends to scrap legislation on caste discrimination that was introduced by the coalition government.

    1. To a motion on Immigration and Identity, we supported an amendment that ensures that party policy on reviewing how asylum rules affect various groups - including Christians and LGBT+ people - also includes those who flee their country of origin because of persecution for their religious or non-religious belief. HSLD was pleased to work with Lib Dems for Seekers of Sanctuary on this amendment: having ascertained that both groups were submitting similar amendments, we withdrew ours and backed theirs.

    2. To a motion on Britain at the heart of a changing world, we submitted and saw passed an amendment that ensures that the party's commitment to protect, defend and promote human rights for all specifically includes the rights of those persecuted for religion or belief.

    3. And finally, to a motion on Liberal Democrat Priorities for a Better Britain, we submitted and saw passed an amendment ensuring that caste, religion and belief are all specifically mentioned as characteristics that should be regarded when thinking about the application of equal opportunities for all.

HSLD also put forward a more substantive amendment to the animal welfare debate. This was unfortunately not selected for debate, after coming very close. It would have required the labelling of meat from animals that had been slaughtered without stunning

It is encouraging and rewarding to see key HSLD principles reflected in party policy, and we look forward to more wins for humanists and secularists in the next year.