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All articles in category Ethics

July 2018
News > Ethics

Ethics – Local perspective on Guernsey’s rejection of assisted dying

One church pastor on the channel island of Guernsey tells us about the recent decision to reject proposals to introduce assisted dying. If the proposals had gone ahead, pressure for similar measures in the UK would have seriously increased. For twelve weeks during February to May this year, the usually quiet, safe island of Guernsey felt like it was on the edge of a precipice. Legislators were bidding to make Guernsey the first place in the British Isles to introduce assisted dying (or more aptly, assisted suicide). Thankfully, with all the credit going to God, the decisive vote was eventually defeated by a sizeable majority....

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July 2018
News > Ethics

Ethics – Abortion buffer zone

In a letter to the Times, secular free speech campaigners criticised a London council’s decision to introduce the UK’s first abortion clinic buffer zone. Following Ealing Council’s unanimous vote to introduce a Public Spaces Protection Order (PSPO), barring protestors from within 100m of a Marie Stopes abortion centre, the campaigners argued that ‘the construction of a ‘Safe Zone’ using a PSPO would unfairly inhibit lawful protest and sets a dangerous precedent for freedoms in the UK. It urged the council to drop its plans for a PSPO and explore other resolutions’. The letter, dated 18 May 2018 and signed by the directors of the Manifesto...

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June 2018
News > Ethics

Ethics – Confidentiality putting girls at risk

Sexual health clinics’ privacy policies may be obstacles to protecting girls from sexual exploitation, a hard-hitting report has found. As reported in the Family Education Trust’s (FET) April bulletin, the Newcastle Safeguarding Children Board’s latest report has revealed confidentiality policies could even be helping the perpetrators carry out abuse without risk of pregnancy or disease. According David Spicer, the report’s author, research into sexual health services in Newcastle found that 85 per cent of victims of sexual exploitation had accessed sexual health services. There were many instances of abused girls using the clinics to obtain contraception, but despite providing their name, age and frequency of...

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May 2018
News > Ethics

Ethics – Abortion clinic campaign

British mothers have launched the ‘Be Here For Me’ campaign to prevent a ban being imposed on pro-life groups standing outside abortion facilities. Mothers who were helped by vigil members outside abortion clinics have spoken out against the introduction of censorship zones that would ban help for women outside abortion facilities. As part of the launch, three women have gone public with their stories, in a video where they tell of the immense pressure they faced to go ahead with a termination. They tell how they were helped by people who were holding vigils outside the abortion clinics, and they call on the public to...

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May 2018
News > Ethics

Ethics – Chalke and transgender

Liberal pastor and author Steve Chalke has stirred up controversy yet again by publishing an e-book in which he claims the eunuch converted after meeting  Philip  the evangelist (Acts 8) was somewhat akin to today’s transgender people. His book, The gender agenda: towards a biblical theology on gender identity, reassignment and confirmation, claims to help churches forge an ‘inclusive theology’. Mr Chalke, a well-known ‘evangelical’ who allows same-sex marriages in his church, claims the Bible preaches inclusivity. However, he fails to acknowledge the clear teaching of Scripture in sexual ethics. While it is important for churches to be welcoming and loving towards all, Scripture must...

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May 2018
News > Ethics

Ethics – Girl Guides trans row

Girl Guide leaders have protested against new rules that allow boys self-identifying as female to share changing rooms, showers and tents with biological girls. Last year, Evangelical Times reported that the Girlguiding UK association had published guidance stating biological males could use the facilities of the gender with which they self-identify. Parents were not necessarily to be informed if their daughters were sharing facilities with biological males — even though this might mean girls as young as 12 or 13 sharing showers with biological males of 18-25 years old. However, 20 Girl Guide leaders have written to Girlguiding UK’s headquarters to challenge the rules, stating...

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May 2018
News > Ethics

Ethics – CofE same-sex decision upheld

A gay clergyman, disciplined for violating Church of England (CofE) teaching on marriage, has lost his case at the Court of Appeal. Canon Jeremy Pemberton entered into a same-sex marriage in 2014, despite CofE rules not allowing clergy to do so. He had his licence as a priest revoked for this action, whereupon he began a legal case. In 2015, he gave evidence, stating ‘no one has the right to tell you who you can or cannot marry’. But the tribunal rejected his legal arguments, and in 2016 an employment appeals tribunal agreed. The Court of Appeal heard his case in January this year, before giving...

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May 2018
News > Ethics

Ethics – Gambling stakes

Government recommendations to reduce the maximum stakes on fixed-odds betting terminals (FOBTs) have not gone far enough to tackle problem gambling, a charity has warned. In March, the Gambling Commission recommended the maximum stake on FOBTs should be set at £30 or less. But campaigners believe it should be reduced to £2 — the same as slot machines — a move supported by many peers in the House of Lords, who called on the government during a recent debate to do more to tackle gambling addiction. Currently, it is possible to bet up to £100 every 20 seconds on these machines, which has contributed significantly...

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May 2018
News > Ethics

Ethics – Medical conscience rights

Members of the House of Lords have heard arguments for and against allowing medical practitioners to have conscience rights enshrined into UK law. In March, Baroness O’Loan’s Conscientious Objection (Medical Activities) Bill went to the Committee Stage in the House of Lords. The bill will clarify the law to ensure conscience protections are in place for medical practitioners to protect them from discrimination, enabling them to fully participate in their chosen professions and care for patients to the best of their ability. It will also allow practitioners to withdraw from end-of-life treatment, activities under the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Act, and abortion. Under the existing...

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April 2018
News > Ethics

Ethics – Pro-lifer praying is ‘abuse’

For pro-life supporters to pray openly outside abortion clinics is ‘abuse and harassment’, Labour MP Fabian Hamilton has claimed. The pro-abortion MP claimed abortion was an issue of ‘gender equality’, as he backed laws on ‘buffer zones’ around abortion centres. Those who stand outside or near abortion centres, keeping vigil and praying for the mothers and their unborn children, should have the whole rule book thrown at them, he said. The MP for Leeds North East was quoted in the Yorkshire Evening Post as saying, ‘Anybody that seeks to actively deter the rights of these women to seek medical treatment must face the full extent...

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April 2018
News > Ethics

Ethics – Pro-gay charity tackles churches

A new organisation has been established to subvert churches and other religious groups that hold to traditional beliefs about sexual ethics. The Ozanne Foundation was set up in January by Jayne Ozanne, who describes herself as a ‘gay evangelical’. The new foundation has gained support from some leading figures in the Church of England, including the Bishop of Liverpool, Rt Rev. Paul Bayes, who is the new chairman. As reported in the English Churchman, other trustees include Very Rev. David Ison, dean of St Paul’s Cathedral, while a council of reference comprises several well-known names, including Very Rev. Jefferey John, Bishop of St Albans, and...

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April 2018
News > Ethics

Ethics – ‘Underground schools’

Children are being indoctrinated and exposed to danger by religious extremists in ‘underground schools’, a report from Ofsted has suggested. The education regulator claimed it had identified more than 350 illegal schools operating outside state schools or registered private schools. According to reports in the Times, Ofsted has issued safeguarding alerts — concerns of abuse or neglect — regarding 50 of them since 2014. However, despite the findings, the Department for Education has been unable to carry out prosecutions. Ofsted said it has also taken books from illegal schools, which claim homosexuality is an ‘abomination’, punishing your wife is ‘lawful’, and blames rapes on the...

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