All cases

Filtered by: Freedom of Expression

Court Rules Student can be Expelled for Quoting Bible on Facebook

October 27, 2017, United Kingdom

On October 27, Felix Ngole, a Christian student who was expelled from university after posting on Facebook his support of Biblical teaching on marriage and sexual ethics, lost his case in a judicial review of the university’s decision.

Access to Justice and Legal Services Exclusion (of individuals or ideas) Freedom of Expression

Some UK Schools Have Removed B.C. and A.D. Dating from Religious Education Classes

October 1, 2017, United Kingdom

B.C. (Before Christ) and A.D. (Anno Domini, meaning "in the year of the Lord"), have been replaced with B.C.E., which stands for Before Common Era, and C.E., meaning Common Era. The changes were justified "to show sensitivity to those who are not Christians."

Freedom of Expression

YouTube Removed Channel of Islam-Critical Priest

September 27, 2017, France

After a third "warning" that his posted videos were "inappropriate" and violated "community rules," YouTube removed priest Guy Pagès's "Islam et Vérité" channel from its content-sharing platform on September 27, 2017 .

Exclusion (of individuals or ideas) Freedom of Expression

Prison Worker Loses Employment Tribunal Appeal over Sermon

August 4, 2017, United Kingdom

A Christian prison worker has lost his latest appeal in the courts over his discipline by HMP Littlehey. Rev Barry Trayorn who worked as a gardener, but volunteered in the chapel, fell into trouble after delivering a talk to prisoners about homosexuality and sin. Following a complaint, he was disciplined then later resigned. In 2016, an employment tribunal ruled that his employers acted within the law. A judge confirmed in August 2017 that ruling was fair, claiming his words could "legitimise mistreatment of homosexual prisoners." Trayhorn will take his case to the Court of Appeal.

Access to Justice and Legal Services Freedom of Expression

Saying Grace in Christian Kindergarten Prohibited

June 26, 2017, Sweden

An independent religious kindergarten in Umeå, Sweden, was forced to stop saying grace before meals by the county government. The Education Act says that religious elements may be included in education at independent schools, but they must be voluntary in order for the children to participate. The law does not say that the children themselves must agree, but rather that their parents consent on their behalf. The county argued that the children have not made the choice to participate in saying grace and have thus prohibited it. Preschool Director Britt Marie Mårtensson said they replaced grace with "Thank you for the sun and the rain and the food on our table."

Freedom of Expression Rights of Parents

Attack Against a Catholic Bishop

May 29, 2017, Spain

A Catholic bishop had to be escorted by the police after several dozens of people holding LGTB banners assaulted him at the entrance of the church after a service.

Freedom of Expression Hate Incident

Reparation Prayers for Abortion Banned by Hospital Management

May 27, 2017, Switzerland

Prayers in reparation for the victims of abortion have been held in the chapel of the University Hospital (CHUV) in Lausanne on the 13th of every month for the past 10 years, organized by the Society of St. Pius X (SSPX). Pierre-Francois Leyvraz, the CEO of the hospital claimed not to have known about the events when the media contacted him. He informed the SSPX that they would no longer have access to the chapel and that the chapel will be closed on the 13th of each month to prevent the prayer meetings. He noted that abortion is legal and they will not permit people opposed to abortion to meet in the hospital chapel.

Exclusion (of individuals or ideas) Freedom of Association and Assembly Freedom of Conscience Freedom of Expression

Medical Director's Dismissal Reversed

May 20, 2017, Germany

On May 19, 2017 the Lüneburg labor court ruled that the termination of Medical Clinic Director Markus Fröhling was unjustified. In February 2017, Fröhling was dismissed after publicly voicing his support for the former gynecology chief physician Thomas Börner, who declined to do abortions in his department. This support caused criticism by both the media and politicians.

Freedom of Conscience Freedom of Expression

Christian Prison Preacher to Appeal Tribunal Ruling

April 27, 2017, United Kingdom

A Christian prison worker who felt he had no option but to resign after being disciplined for quoting from the Bible during a prison chapel service, will challenge an Employment Tribunal's ruling that the prison was right to discipline him. In March 2016, the Employment Tribunal ruled that Barry Trayhorn spoke of God's forgiveness in an "insensitive" way which "failed to have regard for the special nature of the congregation in the prison".

Access to Justice and Legal Services Freedom of Expression

Expelled Christian Student Wins Right to Face High Court

April 26, 2017, United Kingdom

Felix Ngole was expelled from the University of Sheffield in 2016 for writing a post on his private Facebook page in which he quoted Leviticus stating that homosexuality was sinful. Deputy High Court Judge James Lewis has allowed Ngole to take his case to the High Court in London and a ruling is expected after a trial this fall.

Exclusion (of individuals or ideas) Freedom of Expression

Easter Procession Ended in Turmoil in Sevilla

April 14, 2017, Spain

“La Madrugá”, the Easter procession during the night from Maundy Thursday to Good Friday was interrupted and ended in turmoil with 17 people being taken to the hospital and one person was admitted to the ICU for head trauma. Eight people were arrested for the vandalism and the police investigated the connections and potential coordination of the attack on the Easter procession.

Freedom of Association and Assembly Freedom of Expression Freedom of Religion Hate Crime Hate Incident Intolerance towards Religious Symbols Vandalism (form of hate crime)

Swedish Labour Court Rules Against Pro-Life Midwife

April 12, 2017, Sweden

The Swedish Labour Court upheld the judgments of the Discrimination Ombudsman and Tribunal Court in the case of Christian midwife, Ellinor Grimmark, who has been denied jobs at several clinics due to her refusal to carry out abortions and her outspoken stance on the matter.

Freedom of Conscience Freedom of Expression

Pro-Life Philosophy Professor Investigated then Fired from Catholic University

April 11, 2017, Belgium

Philosophy professor Stéphane Mercier was fired by the Catholic University of Leuven after a student filed a complaint about an essay Mercier wrote in which he argued that abortion is the murder of an innocent life.

Freedom of Expression

Politicians of Ponferrada Demand Removal of Holy Week Exhibition in School

March 23, 2017, Spain

The Ponferrada en Común (PeC), el Partido Comunista (PCE) e Izquierda Unida (IU) demanded immediate closure of a Holy Week exhibition in a public school by the Confraternity of Jesus of Nazareth (la Real Hermandad Jesús Nazareno). The political groups argued that such an exhibition “should not take place in a public school in a state that is defined as non-denominational.” They also claimed that the display "endangered safety at the school" as it is in a corridor that could be needed in an emergency.

Exclusion (of individuals or ideas) Freedom of Expression

University Students Want Pro-Life Posters Removed

March 16, 2017, United Kingdom

Aberdeen University students petitioned to have a pro-life poster removed from campus, claiming it was “actively harmful” to women. The Catholic chaplaincy on the campus displayed posters for a 40 Days of Life event, featuring people holding signs and prayer vigils outside the city’s maternity hospital during Lent.

Exclusion (of individuals or ideas) Freedom of Expression

Court: Employers May Prohibit Employees from Wearing Religious Symbols

March 14, 2017, European Institutions (EU, ECHR, et.al.)

On March 14, 2017, the European Court of Justice put employers' interest in "neutrality" above employees' exercise of religious freedom in a landmark judgment. The Court ruled that employers can prohibit the visible wearing of any political, philosophical or religious sign in the workplace.

Freedom of Expression Intolerance towards Religious Symbols

Regional Government of Andalucía Cancels School Procession for Holy Week

March 8, 2017, Spain

School children in Dos Hermanas, Seville, were prohibited from celebrating their usual children's Holy Week procession by the regional government. The government claimed it cancelled the event because of time constraints, but parents of the affected children insist it was cancelled due to a complaint by a secular association.

Freedom of Association and Assembly Freedom of Expression

Anti-Gender Ideology Campaign Censored

March 3, 2017, Spain

HazteOir.org painted a bus to circulate around Madrid with the words "Boys have penises, girls have vaginas. Don't be fooled. If you’re born a man, you’re a man. If you’re a woman, you’ll always be a woman" and publicized a pamphlet it created for parents: "Do you know what they want to teach your child at school? The laws of sexual indoctrination." The Madrid City Council authorized the seizure of the bus without a court order on March 2, 2017.

Exclusion (of individuals or ideas) Freedom of Conscience Freedom of Expression

Primary School Teacher Suspended after Reading Bible Verses to Pupils

March 3, 2017, France

After a group of parents sent a letter of complaint, the school's headmaster suspended the Malicornay teacher. The teacher will remain under suspension pending an investigation into whether he was proselytizing in violation of secularism laws or simply studying the texts with the students. The city's mayor has denounced the suspension as extreme.

Exclusion (of individuals or ideas) Freedom of Expression

Two Street Preachers Convicted of Public Order Offenses

February 28, 2017, United Kingdom

Michael Overd and Michael Stockwell were convicted on February 28, 2017 after a public prosecutor claimed that quoting parts of the King James Bible in the context of modern British society "must be considered to be abusive and is a criminal matter". After a four-day trial, the men were found guilty under Section 31 of the Crime and Disorder Act 1998, for using "threatening or abusive words or behaviour or disorderly behaviour within the hearing or sight of a person likely to be caused harassment, alarm or distress, thereby, and the offence was religiously aggravated."

Exclusion (of individuals or ideas) Freedom of Expression