Unitarians join the Accord Coalition
The General Assembly of Unitarian and Free Christian Churches has announced that it is joining the Accord Coalition on inclusive schooling.
The body is the umbrella organisation for Unitarian and Free Christian congregations in the United Kingdom.
The Accord Coalition, a broad campaign network, encompasses a wide range of different religious and non-religious groups and individuals concerned at the way that faith schools currently operate.
Launched in 2008, Accord already includes among its members the Association of Teachers and Lecturers, the Christian think-tank Ekklesia, the Hindu Academy, Muslim group BMSD, and the British Humanist Association, among others.
Rabbi Dr Jonathan Romain, chair of the Accord Coalition, welcomed the Unitarians' decision to join the organisation. He said: "The Unitarians' decision to join Accord and support our objectives not only broadens the wide range of our membership, but further demonstrates that concern about faith schools is not limited to secular groups, but also encompasses those with committed religious faith."
President of the Unitarians, Neville Kenyon, declared: "We believe that state schools should be open to children of every background, while jobs in schools should be open to all teachers who are qualified to do them."
He continued: "Schools should also teach pupils about the wide range of different religions and beliefs, helping to better prepare them for life in our increasingly diverse society. We are delighted to have become members of the Accord Coalition, which successfully addresses issues of religious liberty and is entirely in tune with the Unitarian ethos."
Unitarianism describes itself as "an open-minded and individualistic approach to faith that gives scope for a very wide range of beliefs and doubts. Religious freedom for each individual is at the heart of Unitarianism."
There are 170 congregations and fellowships within the denomination in the UK.