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Tuesday, 18 November 2008

Religious bullying

The findings of a survey showing that one in four young people from across all religions is being bullied because of his or her religious beliefs should come as no surprise. Kids whose parents subscribe to different superstitions are often kept in different environments called “faith” schools.

The finding comes from a report by Beatbullying, the UK’s leading bullying prevention charity, published today and reported by the think tank Ekklesia.

“The findings will contribute to concerns that faith schools are fuelling serration on the basis of faith,” says Ekklesia. “The report also addressed the bullying of atheists.”

Ekklesia then quotes the report as saying:

There is little or no support, few outlets and limited provision provided for young people to talk about their faith. Almost half of young people do not talk about religious or faith issues at all.

Religion, faith or perceived faith background arguably mediates peer relationships and interactions. 1 in 5 young people report[s] friendships with people largely from the same religious background, arguably indicating a level of segregation and religious intolerance.

The group that produced the report, Beatbullying, runs Interfaith bullying-prevention programmes, funded by the UK government, to divert the behaviour of those using their superstitious belief systems as a reason to bully their peers.

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