Friday, 18 May 2012

Tower Hamlets parents to launch petition against sexually-explicit school teaching

Christoper Winter Project opposed by parents
Parents in Tower Hamlets are launching a petition to stop sexually-explicit teaching in local schools.
Tower Hamlets Parents' Action Group on SRE (THPAG-SRE), who are launching the petition, is a group of concerned Muslim parents with children at school in the borough. The group is supported by SPUC's Safe at School campaign.

These parents are angry that more than £80,000 of taxpayers' money has been spent on the Christopher Winter Project (CWP), a sexually-explicit teaching programme for schools in the borough. Tower Hamlets Council spent £2,277 on CWP and the NHS Primary Care Trust paid £78,000 to the London Borough of Tower Hamlets to train teachers to use the resource. Teachers in 33 schools have been trained by CWP. These are mainly primary schools and include both Anglican and Catholic primary schools.

The parents are also unhappy that the Local Authority introduced this programme with no consultation with parents. Government guidelines on non-statutory sex and relationships education (SRE) stress repeatedly that parents must be involved in SRE. In addition, local authorities have a very limited role in the provision of sex education in schools. (See http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/2002/32/section/79 )

Tower Hamlets Parents' Action Group on SRE (THPAG-SRE) is therefore launching a borough-wide petition on Monday 21 May, calling on the Tower Hamlets Council and the Healthy Lives Team to stop all funding of CWP and allow schools to decide on SRE free from Local Authority interference. The petition can be read and downloaded at:
http://www.spuc.org.uk/campaigns/safeatschool/towerhamletspetition20120521

The parents have also organised five meetings around the borough:
  • Monday 21 May 2012: London Muslim Centre, 46 Whitechapel Rd, E1 1JX, when the petition will be launched, 7pm to 9pm
  • Tuesday 22 May 2012: 55 Club, Manchester Rd, E14 3JF, 7.30pm to 9pm
  • Wednesday 23 May 2012: Harford St Multicentre, 115 Harford St, E1 4FG, 6pm to 8pm
  • Thursday 24 May 2012: Kingsley Hall, Powis Rd, E3 3HJ, 7pm to 9pm
  • Friday 25 May 2012: St Hilda's Community Centre, 18 Club Row, E2 7EY, 7pm to 9pm.
Tower Hamlets Parents' Action Group on SRE (THPAG-SRE) is supported by:
  • Tower Hamlets Council of Mosques
  • SREIslamic
  • East London Mosque
  • Da'watul Islam UK and Eire
  • Association of Muslim Governors
  • Muslim Teachers and Educators Committee
  • SPUC's Safe at School campaign.
For more information, please contact:
  • Yusuf Patel, SREIslamic, mobile 07783 027067
  • Antonia Tully, Safe at School, 020 84073463
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Thursday, 17 May 2012

SPUC launches briefing to guide submissions to same-sex marriage consultation

SPUC has launched a briefing document to help supporters make submissions to the government's consultation on same-sex marriage. The document can be read and downloaded at http://www.spuc.org.uk/campaigns/ssm_consult The deadline for submissions to the consultation is 14 June.

SPUC's concern is to protect marriage because marriage, as the life-long exclusive union of a husband and wife, protects unborn children and helps families to flourish. Marriage is not owned by the state – it belongs to mankind.

The proposals for same-sex marriage (or “equal civil marriage” as officialdom describes it), were not included in the Queen’s Speech last week, but this does not mean the plans have been dropped: far from it. The Home Office is continuing with its plans to redefine marriage, and with the present consultation exercise. The Coalition for Marriage petition, supported by SPUC, is very significant (500,000 signatures and growing), but the consultation process - the official channel - must not be ignored.

In addition to SPUC's briefing, other helpful resources for those making submissions are:
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Cardiff public meeting to warn parents about explicit sex ed

Cardiff
A public meeting to be held in Cardiff next Wednesday (23 May) will warn parents about explicit sex education in primary schools.

The meeting will be addressed by Antonia Tully of SPUC's Safe at School campaign. Mrs Tully will explain that many parents around the country are disturbed that graphic teaching programmes, such as Channel Four's "Living and Growing", are being shown to children as young as seven in primary schools.

"Living and Growing" contains cartoons showing sexual intercourse. Many parents are concerned that this is priming children for teenage sex. Parents who object to it are often told that primary schools are under a legal obligation to deliver sex education - this is untrue.

All parents of primary-age children are particularly encouraged to attend Wednesday's meeting. The meeting will:
  • see extracts from "Living and Growing"
  • hear the case against explicit sex education for young children
  • uphold the rights of parents to protect their children.
The meeting will be held at "The Bute Suite", Sport Wales National, Sophia Gardens, Cardiff CF11 9SW and go from 7.30pm to 9.30pm.

For more information about this meeting or the national campaign please contact SPUC on telephone 020 7091 7091 or email safeatschool@spuc.org.uk

Visit our website at: http://www.spuc.org.uk/campaigns/safeatschool

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Wednesday, 16 May 2012

Forced abortion in China: how it works

The Economist's illustration
The latest version of The Economist magazine has a fascinating insight into how China's system of forced abortion is managed, entitled: "Suppressing dissent: The emperor does know" and subtitled "How the system rewards repression, in the name of maintaining stability". The article says:
"[U]nder the Communist Party’s system of cadre evaluations, local officials are graded on the basis of a series of internal targets that have little to do with the rule of law. The targets are meant for internal use, but local governments have sometimes published them on websites, and foreign scholars have also seen copies. The most important measures are maintaining social stability, achieving economic growth and, in many areas, enforcing population controls. Cadres sign contracts that spell out their responsibilities. Failure to meet targets can end a cadre’s career. Fulfilling them, even if it means trampling laws to do so, can mean career advancement and financial bonuses."
The Economist's insight confirms what SPUC pointed out ten years ago almost to the day:
"Chinese officials [have] admitted that even they themselves are often coerced to meet birth control quotas ... The system of punishments for local political and family planning leaders who fail to fulfill their state-assigned targets is still official policy."
It is important for anyone concerned with the brutal anti-life nature of the one-child policy to read The Economist's article to understand how the system is enforced. What the strongly pro-abortion Economist doesn't point out, however, is that the China Family Planning Association, the state-run body responsible for ensuring the policy's implementation, is a member of the International Planned Parenthood Federation (IPPF), the world's largest pro-abortion organisation (see section 27 of SPUC's 2005 submission to the House of Commons Foreign Affairs Committee). The UK government and other Western governments give millions of pounds annually to IPPF.

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Tuesday, 15 May 2012

Must-read pro-life news-stories, Tue 15 May

Clock showing Japanese population decline
Top stories:

Repeat abortions figures are disturbing and reveal flouting of law, says SPUC
Figures which show a high incidence of multiple repeat abortions in England and Wales [Mail, 14 May] are deeply disturbing and underline how the Abortion Act is being systematically abused across the country, says SPUC. Paul Tully, SPUC’s general secretary, said: "The figures indicate wide differences around the country for repeat abortions, but regional and local variations also suggest that in many areas abortion is being used unlawfully to try to cut the birth-rate among minority and low-income groups more likely to claim benefits." [SPUC, 14 May]

Cambridge students targeted by firm offering £750 to egg donors
A company has leafleted thousands of students at Cambridge university, offering them £750 to 'donate' their eggs. [Mail, 13 May] Anthony Ozimic, SPUC's communications manager, told the media yesterday that: "Such advertising represents an unacceptable commodification of procreation, violating international norms against the commercialisation of the human body, its tissues and organs. It exploits cash-strapped students at a formative time (late teens/early 20s) in their adult development and in their values, hopes and feelings about parenthood. And it serves the vested interests of the IVF industry, which puts profits and kudos above the welfare of patients." [John Smeaton, 13 May]

Other stories:
Embryology
  • London IVF clinic makes £25 million annual profit [Mail, 14 May]
  • MPs demand inquiry into risks of most popular IVF after it has been linked with higher risks of birth defects [Mail, 13 May]
  • Geneticist claims that weeding out embryos with severe genetic abnormalities is ‘a tremendous blessing and a wonderful thing’ [Peter Saunders, 13 May]
  • 'Biological Clock' cannot be rewound [Pat Buckley, 11 May]
  • Storm as Law Society bans conference debating gay marriage [Telegraph, 11 May]
Population
  • Falling birth rates (pictured) mean Japan 'won't have any children under 15 by 3011' [Mail, 14 May]
Sexual ethics
General
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Monday, 14 May 2012

Repeat abortions figures are disturbing and reveal flouting of law

Figures which show a high incidence of multiple repeat abortions in England and Wales (Mail, 14 May) are deeply disturbing and underline how the Abortion Act is being systematically abused across the country.

Paul Tully, SPUC’s general secretary, told the media today:
"The figures indicate wide differences around the country for repeat abortions, but regional and local variations also suggest that in many areas abortion is being used unlawfully to try to cut the birth-rate among minority and low-income groups more likely to claim benefits.

Professor Dame Sally Davies, the Chief Medical Officer, issued a directive in February instructing abortion providers and NHS medical directors to comply fully with the medical conditions required for abortions in the Abortion Act 1967.

We suspect that Professor Davies' letter is being totally ignored by both NHS trusts and private abortion clinics. Our belief is that the Sexual Health Team at the Department of Health is continuing to tell doctors and hospitals to provide abortion on demand, and that they are telling abortion providers that there is no political appetite to take action against them for breaking the law.

There is no evidence of any change in policy by the major private abortion clinics which have lucrative contracts to do NHS abortions. They are doing no fewer illegal abortions than hitherto. The legal grounds for abortion are not fulfilled in 99% of cases."
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Sunday, 13 May 2012

SPUC comment on Cambridge cash-for-eggs story

The leaflet
The British media have reported this weekend that a company leafleted thousands of students at Cambridge university, offering them £750 to 'donate' their eggs - see yesterday's Daily Mail for more detail. Anthony Ozimic, SPUC's communications manager, told the media yesterday that such advertising:
  • represents an unacceptable commodification of procreation, violating international norms against the commercialisation of the human body, its tissues and organs
  • exploits cash-strapped students at a formative time (late teens/early 20s) in their adult development and in their values, hopes and feelings about parenthood
  • serves the vested interests of the IVF industry, which puts profits and kudos above the welfare of patients.
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