Support religious literacy Safeguard a place for religious broadcasting. Because #BeliefMatters

February 2024

Religious broadcasting is in danger.

And the Media Bill which is currently before Parliament puts this socially valuable genre in even greater jeopardy.

The Bill will form the framework for the social contract between broadcasters and audiences for the foreseeable future and provides the basis by which broadcasting in the UK will be regulated. But, unlike existing legislation, what it has to say about core public service genres – like content exploring religion or belief – is… nothing.

We believe the Bill should do more to hold public service broadcasters to account and that public service broadcasters should make available programmes about religion and other beliefs.

If you agree, click here to sign our petition.

At the Sandford St Martin Trust we have long argued that religious literacy is a key cultural and civic competency and that broadcasting, because of its reach, is an important tool in supporting inter-community relations and cooperation at local, national and international levels.

Whether you believe or not, to mistake religion as a marginal interest or the preoccupation of the elderly or the weird, is to misunderstand how the great majority of people around the world understand their lives. The world is becoming more religious, not less, and current events in the Middle East, Russia and the Ukraine and Nigeria, for example, show that religious identity can have profound political impact.

Still over the last twenty years broadcasters have become increasingly reluctant to engage directly with religion or belief as a genre. They’re being shortsighted.

Religion matters more now than ever before. And audiences deserve thoughtful, engaging content that reflects this.

If you agree that religious literacy is important…

If you agree that broadcasters should be required to make this sort of content…

then click here to sign our petition.

Thank you.