Secularism

The British Columbia Humanist Association supports a secular society that affirms:

  • the right of every individual to practice any religion or none, free from coercion by the government, private institutions or their community and
  • that the state has a duty of religious neutrality, meaning it must neither endorse nor prohibit any belief or non-belief.

Open secularism is the best way to fully guarantee the freedom of religion and conscience of all citizens in a plural society. Secularism is the principle that the government should not privilege or disadvantage any religious or non-religious belief over any other.

We oppose government funding being given preferentially to religious organizations and tax exemptions that only benefit the religious (for example, permissive exemptions for houses of worship or the Clergy Residence Deduction). We call on the federal government to remove "the supremacy of God" from the preamble of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms and to create a secular national anthem.

Latest news


It's time to end prayers in the BC Legislature

To coincide with the release of the second edition of its Legislative Prayers Across Canada report, the BC Humanist Association is launching a renewed call to end the practice of starting sittings in the Legislative Assembly of British Columbia with prayers. The new edition of the report reflects a change...

Legislative Prayer Across Canada

In the second edition of Legislative Prayer Across Canada, we update our original report to include the move in October 2021 by Nova Scotia to replace its practice of beginning sittings with the Lord's Prayer with a moment of silent reflection. We will continue to update the report in the...

Canadian Secular Alliance joins interventions in White Rock Pride human rights case

The BC Humanists are congratulating the Canadian Secular Alliance on their successful application to intervene in a BC Human Rights Tribunal case that pits the White Rock Pride Society against the Star of the Sea Parish.

Toward an inclusive society: BCHA makes Budget 2022 submissions

In its response to the province's Budget 2022 consultation, the BCHA is calling on the Government of BC to end the funding of private schools and property tax exemptions for places of worship 

Petition calls for end to vaccine card loophole

As a requirement to show proof of vaccination at many events comes into effect in British Columbia, members of the BC Humanist Association (BCHA) are calling for an end to an exemption for religious events.


Clergy residence deduction cost $1 billion over last decade

In its latest report, the BC Humanist Association (BCHA) has estimated that the clergy residence deduction has cost the Canadian government over $1 billion over the past decade as individual religious officials are able to reduce their taxes by one-third.


Have an omelet and pray, with the Prime Minister

This morning, the Prime Minister, leader of opposition and an untold number of Members of Parliament gathered, over Zoom, to join in the annual National Prayer Breakfast. While the American version of the event is probably more familiar to most people, Canada has in fact had its own Prayer Breakfast...

Religion doesn't protect contracts from judicial scrutiny

The BC Humanist Association is welcoming a unanimous decision by Canada's highest court that affirms that religious organizations can be subject to judicial scrutiny. The case stems from five individuals who sued their former church following their expulsion from the congregation. The members alleged church leadership failed to follow their...

See more secularism posts.



Created with NationBuilder Creative Commons License