Jonathan Bartley's blog

Siobhain McDonagh MP the 'secularist' ?

Cranmer has drawn attention to allegations about a Methodist lay minister, councillor George Reynolds, who has been “deselected as a candidate in the forthcoming local elections not because he objected to canvassing on the Sabbath on grounds of religious conscience, but because, as a pastor of his church, he is obliged to tend for his flock on Sundays”.

"It's all about us": Ethnocentrism over religious civil partnerships

A bit of confusion at the Daily Telegraph today. George Pitcher suggests: Lords vote for 'gay weddings' – so what? Meanwhile Martin Beckford and Heidi Blake report: Clergy could be sued if they refuse to carry out ‘gay marriages’.

Faith schools and social selection

Alex Kennedy at Accord (of which we were a founder member) has done some excellent work looking at religious admissions and social selection, in particular with regard to the extent to which faith schools take vulnerable children. It seems that faith schools take far fewer when compared to other schools of a non-religious character, particularly when it comes to measures such as free school meals or children with Special Educational Needs.

Help CAAT following their injunction against BAE

Yesterday, the High Court granted our friends at Campaign Against Arms Trade (CAAT) an injunction against BAe (one of my co-directors at Ekklesia, Symon Hill, came to us from CAAT and was involved in

Tory proposals would 'turn the clock back 30 years' for disabled

I was shocked to discover in the Conservative Party’s draft manifesto on schools the following line (pp 7) pledging to:

Israel Apartheid Week

Yesterday, the 6th International Israeli Apartheid Week (IAW) got underway.

“Restorative Justice” – whisper it quietly

…or don’t mention it at all, if you are Gordon Brown.

Cameron and Gove at odds over role of religion in 'free' schools

Michael Gove needs to clarify his party’s policy after he appeared to contradict David Cameron today over whether faith can be a basis for the new ‘free schools’ which the Conservatives are pro

Strange 'political' sources at The Times

There have been some very sweeping and unattributed political claims reported by lovely Ruth Gledhill recently. She of course needs to protect her sources, although it is not clear why they wouldn't want to be identified. But it would be interesting to know where these sources are coming from, because whoever they are, they don’t seem to know what they are talking about.

'Vote for change' – a message devoid of vision and values

Yesterday, on the eve of their last conference before the general election, the Conservatives unveiled their election slogan – "Vote for change".