The decision to ban a Roman Catholic poster about climate change has been roundly criticised by both a Muslim group and a Jewish group.
A Roman Catholic organisation was told it could not advertise an event on religion and climate change in local libraries unless it removed words like ‘Christian’ and ‘God’ from the text.
Camden Council said that while it was happy to promote events supporting green issues, it would not allow any posters promoting religion.
A Muslim cleric, Mohammed Joynal Uddin, told a local newspaper: “I would not have any objection to the poster – we are living in a multi-faith society”.
Jon Benjamin who is the Chief Executive on the Board of Deputies of British Jews also couldn’t see anything wrong with the poster.
He said: “If this is a way of appealing to Christians to engage in an important topical debate, then there is nothing at all wrong with a flyer of this nature.
“There is no suggestion of proselytising or of promoting intolerance and there can be no reasonable objection.”
The poster advertised a talk by television broadcaster Mark Dowd who expressed surprise at the ban.
He said: “I find it bizarre. You would have thought that instead of saying no religious posters they would look at each individual one and judge them on their own merit.”
The Christian Institute’s Mike Judge said the decision was “ridiculous”, adding that “most people will roll their eyes and shake their heads at it”.
“But it is serious because it reveals a problem deep at the heart of too many public bodies”, he continued.
“They think it’s OK to trample on Christianity in a way that they would never do with any other religious group.
“That complacency has to stop.”
The Times has reported that the council is now reconsidering its ban.
It quoted a spokesman as saying: “We have asked them to bring the posters in so we can have another look at them.
“We are very happy to help publicise community events that are open to everyone on our noticeboards.
“However we are not able to accept posters that promote particular religious beliefs or particular points of view.”