Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Sectarianism in Scotland 2

Tackle 'social causes' of bigotry

Church leaders say efforts must focus on the causes of sectarianism

Church leaders attending a summit in Glasgow have said the social causes of sectarianism must be tackled.

Roman Catholic Cardinal Keith O'Brien said attention should be given to those whose behaviour is the result of having nothing to do.

He said: "I think that we should now begin to look at the wider social causes of sectarian animosity."

The Moderator of the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland said the problem of intolerance is in society.

The Right Reverend Alan McDonald said: "I believe that the problem is not in the churches, the problem is not in the football clubs, the problem is in society.

Anti-bigotry football body set up

"The culture of intolerance that we all want to get rid of is out there."

The moderator said he had planned to attend an Old Firm match at Ibrox with the Cardinal as a show of unity to rival fans.

Though Rangers were relaxed about the plan, he said security staff said it would not be a good idea.

"They replied that a quiet afternoon could not be guaranteed under such circumstances," he said.

Full story on BBC website:

Anti-bigotry football body set up

The Old Firm has united previously with anti-sectarian wristbands
First Minister Jack McConnell has unveiled a plan to create a new body to tackle sectarianism in football.
The launch of Football For All was revealed at Scotland's second Sectarianism Summit.

A blueprint to tackle bigotry also introduces a disciplinary offence of unacceptable conduct in stadiums.

At the meeting in Glasgow, Justice Minister Cathy Jamieson revealed that football banning orders could be extended to marches and parades.

A series of action points has been drawn up in a report entitled "Calling full time on sectarianism" by a working group looking into the issue.

Full story on BBC website: