Hull Christian Union banned for being run by Christians
Student chiefs at Hull University have threatened to ban a student Christian Union because it doesn’t allow non-believers such as atheists to run the CU.
The constitution of the CU requires members of its executive committee to be practicing Christians who must sign the CU’s basis of faith. This is too much for the Student Union Council which has threatened to revoke the CU’s status as a Union society unless the CU changes its constitution to allow non-Christian students into the leadership. It claims the CU’s constitution is “discriminatory”.
The CU has not backed down. It has taken legal advice and instructed a solicitor. Through its solicitor, it has informed the Student Council that its decision not to ratify the CU constitution is unlawful. There is a clear breach of the 1986 Education (No 2) Act which guarantees freedom of speech on campus, as well as European Convention rights on freedom of speech and freedom of religion. The way that the students have been treated means there is also a breach of new equality laws.
The Christian Institute has been assisting and supporting the Hull CU which is linked to the Universities and Colleges Christian Fellowship (UCCF).
Colin Hart, Director of The Christian Institute, said: “It is completely crazy Hull CU is being told that it cannot require its leaders to be Christians. It is totally intolerant of the right of students to associate with like-minded people. The union would not dare tell the Muslim society that it must be run by non-Muslims. The decision of the Union is totally unlawful. I very much hope that Hull Student Council will see sense and rescind their decision not to ratify the CU constitution.”
Please note: There are two entirely separate Christian Unions at Hull University. One is linked to the UCCF, the other is not. This press release relates only to the UCCF CU.