New Cases on Crucifixes in Schools – 1
Remus Cernea of the Asociaţia Umanistă Română informs us of a new case from Romania to the European Court of Human Rights regarding religious symbols in schools (case number 54529/09, Moise (3) c/Romania). He writes that it is quite different from the Lautsi case for at least three reasons:
- the Lautsi case was lost in the Italian courts, whereas the Moise case was successful in the Romanian National Council for Combating Discrimination. The NCCD decided that Orthodox icons may be put in classes only when during lessons dedicated to studying religion. The Ministry of Education started a lawsuit against the NCCD but at the Court of Appeal the Ministry lost. It appealed to the Supreme Court where the Ministry won the case, but only for procedural reasons, not because of the essence of the case.
- in the Lautsi case it was argued that the presence of the crucifix itself discriminated against children who have other religions and those who have none. Emil Moise is arguing also that the Orthodox symbols in schools are a violation of the right of freedom of thought, conscience and religion of all children.
- in Romanian public schools there is very strong religious pressure because there are many religious services attended by all the children, religion is taught in a confessional manner and most of the children (92%) and teachers (60%) are unaware of the possibility of opting out. The result is that children are forced to go to church and forced to say prayers and to participate in religious rituals in class. Chapels are being built in more and more schools, and more and more priests are being appointed as teachers, directors of schools, inspectors and high level members of the Ministry of Education.
See also here.
This content last updated 27 October 2011 @ 9:40 am