YFG urges EU to respect Christian symbols in Schools

YOUTH OF THE EUROPEAN PEOPLES PARTY (YEPP)

SUPPORT THE RIGHT FOR PUBLIC SCHOOLS TO DISPLAY CHRISTIAN SYMBOLS.

Young Fine Gael's International Committee has issued a strong response to the recent ruling by the European Court of Human right stating that crucifixes should not be displayed in Italian schools.

In the recent case Lautsi V Italy (no 30814/06), the court ruled that the display of crucifixes in Italian schools 'violated the principle of secular education and might be intimidating for children of other faiths.'

Young Fine Gael's Colm Lauder challenged this by putting forward a resolution at the recent YEPP Seminar in Albania calling for the European Union to respect the right of European schools to continue to display Christian symbols, following the principles of subsidiarity. The resolution was resolutely passed by the delegates present, who represent almost every country and tradition in the European continent.

In proposing Mr. Lauder said: "Europe is historically, traditionally and culturally Christian and that as a member of a Christian Democratic party, and I believe these values and traditions should be respected."

Following the resounding vote in favour, Mr. Lauder said "this reaffirms the importance of cultural and traditional values in Europe, and the need for these to be protected."

Young Fine Gael reiterated the point that decisions by the European Court of Human rights, should be to fight intolerance, not to encourage it, by actions such as the banning of Crucifixes from public schools.

Contact:

Colm Lauder
International Committee
Young Fine Gael
Tel: 087-9721560

Full text of resolution below:

YEPP

Resolution:
Christian symbols in public schools

Presented by YFG (Ireland)
Supported by FIG, UDC & Junge Generation (Italy)

Recognizing:

• The European Court of Human Rights recently ruled that the display of crucifixes in Italian schools 'violated the principle of secular education and might be intimidating for children of other faiths'.

• This ruling stated that crucifixes should not be displayed in Italian public schools, it has implications for many EU member states.

Acknowledging:

• Europe is historically, traditionally and culturally Christian, be that Anglican, Protestant, Roman Catholic or Christian Orthodox.

• The Crucifix is an 'undeniable symbol of Christianity', the court ruled, and as such were at odds with the principle of "educational pluralism." The court stopped short of ordering authorities to remove crucifixes from all state-run schools, however the long-term implications of the ruling were unclear.

• This lack of clarity has left many Christians feeling uncomfortable with what effect this ruling may have in the future in their countries.

YEPP calls on:

• The European Union to respect the right of European schools to continue to display Christian symbols, following the principles of subsidiarity.

Adopted the YEPP Seminar, Tirana Albania 5th December 2009.

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