Kirk welcomes Scottish first minister's pause on sectarianism bill

By agency reporter
24 Jun 2011

The Church of Scotland has welcomed the decision by the Scottish Government to allow time for more consideration of the Offensive Behaviour at Football and Threatening Communications Bill.

Following the announcement by First Minister Alex Salmond MSP that the Bill will not be rushed through by the end of next week, the Rt Rev David Arnott, Moderator of the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland, commented: “I am pleased that the Government have heeded advice from ourselves and others not to be hasty."

He continued: "It is important that civic Scotland gets the chance to be part of proper democratic scrutiny on what is a crucial cultural issue. I hope that this change indicates that the Government are serious about the need to make sure any new law is necessary, would work, and reduces the chance of any unintended consequences."

The Kirk Moderator added: “The Church of Scotland is committed to working with others to do all we can to try to reconcile communities and put an end to this vile and hateful behaviour which demeans us all. We appreciate the ongoing efforts that the Government continues to support and this proposed legislation may be a further way to make a difference."

"But tackling the root cause of the problem rather than the symptoms remains a serious challenge that everyone in Scotland needs to play a part in overcoming, a challenge that begins in communities as much as it does in the Parliamentary chamber,” he said.

[Ekk/3]

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