A report examined the relationship between faith and health, and the role of faith communities in improving health and reducing health inequalities in the United Kingdom.
Source: Lucy November, The Impact of Faith-Based Organisations on Public Health and Social Capital, Faith Action
An article examined the legislation adopted by Britain and France regarding forced marriage, and the politics concerning religious and cultural differences that had driven their approaches. It said that both countries needed to find a way to reconcile multiculturalism with human rights, by working with civil society and non-governmental organizations to uphold international law on human rights while embracing cultural and religious difference.
Source: Aisha Gill and Anicee Van Engeland, 'Criminalization or "multiculturalism without culture"? Comparing British and French approaches to tackling forced marriage', Journal of Social Welfare & Family Law, Volume 36 Number 3
A new book examined the experiences of veiled Muslim women as victims of Islamophobia, and the impact of this victimization. It said that the threat of abuse and violence had long-lasting effects for both actual and potential victims, and that there was a case for developing a more effective approach to engaging with female victims that recognized their potential multiple vulnerabilities and accounted for their cultural and religious needs.
Source: Irene Zempi and Neil Chakraborti, Islamophobia, Victimisation and the Veil, Palgrave Pivot
An article examined faith-based schools within the context of school choice, drawing on social identity theory.
Source: Stratos Patrikios and John Curtice, 'Attitudes towards school choice and faith schools in the UK: a question of individual preference or collective interest?', Journal of Social Policy, Volume 43 Issue 3
A report (by an official advisory body) examined whether the two offences under which hate crime was prosecuted could be extended to bring equality of treatment across the five characteristics of disability, gender identity, race, religion, and sexual orientation. The report said that a consultation had revealed strong support for extending the aggravated offences, but also serious concerns from many stakeholders that the existing offences were unnecessarily complex and not working well. The Commission therefore recommended that a review of options should be conducted, but said that, in the absence of support or resources for a review, a less satisfactory solution would be for aggravated offences to be extended to disability, sexual orientation, and transgender identity. With regards to sentencing, the Commission said that the current, enhanced sentencing powers were under-used, partly because the the hostility element of hate crime was not always fully investigated, and the court was not always given the associated evidence. The report made recommendations for clearer sentencing guidance, and for the police national computer records to show where offences were proven to be aggravated by hostility.
Source: Hate Crime: Should the current offences be extended?, LC348, Law Commission
The government began consultation on proposals to introduce an alternative finance product for student loans, based on the principles of Islamic finance and intended to be compliant with Sharia law. The consultation would close on 12 June 2014.
Source: Shariah-Compliant Student Finance: Consultation on a Sharia-compliant alternative finance product, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills
An article examined the relationship between religious factors and opposition to abortion. It said that opposition to abortion was not solely based on differences in faith or denominational affiliation: greater religious involvement or commitment, and more traditionalist beliefs, were found to underpin opposition.
Source: Ben Clements, 'Religion and the sources of public opposition to abortion in Britain: the role of "belonging", "behaving" and "believing"', Sociology, Volume 48 Issue 2
An article examined the engagement of charismatic-evangelical churches with deprived urban areas. It argued that their experience challenged established understandings of faith-based social action through the coexistence of two contrasting modes of operation – 'service provider' and 'intentional community' – and through their evangelistic or conversion-oriented intentions.
Source: Andy Wier, 'Faith-based social action below the radar: a study of the UK charismatic-evangelical urban church', Voluntary Sector Review, Volume 5 Number 1
An article examined the way in which 'faith' was articulated and experienced in faith-based organizations (FBOs), drawing on a study of FBOs that provided services for homeless people in the United Kingdom. It said that faith was expressed in a range of nuanced ways, but evident 'in palimpsest' only in some projects. It said that the findings problematized FBO typologies and suggested that, although the differences between faith-based and other provision should not be exaggerated, faith remained important to the motivations of many service providers and there was still potential value in the spiritual support offered as an option by most FBOs.
Source: Sarah Johnsen, 'Where's the "faith" in "faith-based" organisations? The evolution and practice of faith-based homelessness services in the UK', Journal of Social Policy, Volume 43 Issue 2
An article examined the place of religion within multicultural social structures and the perceived risks and benefits of the incorporation of this within state and social policy. This was the first of a three part debate in this issue of the journal.
Source: Tariq Modood, 'Multiculturalism and religion: a three part debate. Part one – accommodating religions: multiculturalismï¿½s new fault line', Critical Social Policy, Volume 34 Issue 1
An article responded to Gurnam Singh and Stephen Cowden's article on accommodating religions. This was the third of a three part debate in this issue of the journal.
Source: Tariq Modood, 'Part three. The fault lines of multiculturalism: a rejoinder', Critical Social Policy, Volume 34 Issue 1
A new book examined the role and meaning of religion for young people growing up in contemporary, multicultural urban contexts.
Source: Nicola Madge, Peter Hemming, and Kevin Stenson, Youth On Religion: The development, negotiation and impact of faith and non-faith identity, Routledge
An article responded to Tariq Modood's article on 'multiculturalism's new fault lines'. This was the second of a three part debate in this issue of the journal.
Source: Gurnam Singh and Stephen Cowden, 'Part two. Response to Tariq Modood ï¿½ accommodating religions: whoï¿½s accommodating whom?', Critical Social Policy, Volume 34 Issue 1
An article examined the extent to which the religion of an offender should be taken into account at the sentencing stage, in light of a more fully developed concept of 'equality' that had emerged from discrimination law. Formal equality required that religion should be taken into account where it fitted with established grounds relevant to 'offence seriousness' or mitigation; and the concept of 'substantive equality' required deeper consideration to be given to how established sentencing principles might have a greater impact on the protected characteristics under the Equality Act 2010, such as religion.
Source: Chara Bakalis, 'The religion of the offender and the concept of equality in the sentencing process', Oxford Journal of Law and Religion, Volume 2 Issue 2
A think-tank report examined the relationships between religious views and political affiliation and values in Britain, based on data from the British Election Survey and the British Social Attitudes Survey.
Source: Ben Clements and Nick Spencer, Voting and Values in Britain: Does religion count?, Theos
A paper discussed the faith-related barriers to organ donation and outlined an action plan, developed by religious leaders in partnership with NHS Blood and Transplant, to increase donation levels.
Source: Gurch Randhawa, Faith Engagement and Organ Donation Action Plan, University of Bedfordshire/NHS Blood and Transplant