In the sub-menus below, please find:

1. The Humanist Society of Victoria Incorporated joins with other freethought groups to publicize the need for governments to refrain from allowing religious people privileges that are withheld from non-religious people. The separation of religion and State is the basic principle of secular government.

2. The Society’s major recent campaign has been against discrimination because of religion in State schools.

(The campaign began with a request by the Society in 2008 to the Victorian Department of Education and Early Childhood Development to permit the teaching of Humanism and Applied Ethics (Click here) in Government schools. This was tentatively agreed to in December, but revoked in August 2009. The legal anti-discrimination campaign itself was initiated in June 2010 by John Russell, Vice-President, Humanist Society of Victoria Incorporated, who learned of the coercion being inflicted on young children during special religious instruction in State schools. Russell brought it to the attention of the Public Interest Law Clearing House (PILCH) who in turn carried the case to the law firm, Holding and Redlich, Melbourne. In their turn Holding and Redlich agreed to represent the Humanist Society pro bono, for which the Society is very grateful.)

Firstly please read Section 2.2.10 and 2.2.11 (S 2.2.10-11) of the Education Act 2006 followed by The Department of Education and Early Childhood Development’s Additional advices. Secondly click here to find out more about the Society’s policy, and thirdly click on the items below this one to:

(i) read the HSV letter to School Councils to find out about policy implementation as in February 2011,

(ii) read Response to Sunday Age Article in March 2011, which also describes the Society’s initiation of the school parents’ group, Fairness in Religions in School, and

(iii) follow current progress on the home page in the Society’s initiated anti-discrimination action by three school parents against the Department of Education and Early Childhood Development (DEECD).

3. Discussion on amending the Education Act to make the section 2.2.10 on secular education more inclusive of all world-views, and

4. In addition there is full support for the proposed Tobin tax.

Harry Gardner, Stephen Stuart, 6 April 2013

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