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Not everyone takes notice of election manifestos. But it’s good to know what each party is saying about the persecuted church because we can use it as a reference point for the next five years – holding parties to account on the promises they’ve made to you, the voters!

Open Doors asked…

We wrote to each political party, urging them to include pledges of action on faith-based persecution.

And this is what they came up with…

Election promises…

Conservative Party: "We will seek to protect those persecuted for their faith and implement the Truro Review recommendations." (p53)

Labour Party: “At home and abroad we will ensure all Foreign Office staff receive training on religious literacy. We will ensure British embassies and high commissions in relevant countries should deliver tailored responses to any violations of freedom of religion or belief.” (Race and Faith Manifesto, p12)

Liberal Democrats: Appoint an ambassador-level Champion for Freedom of Belief. Protect, defend and promote human rights for all, including LGBT+ individuals who are persecuted across the world as well as those persecuted for their religion or belief." (p92)

DUP: “The DUP successfully urged the government to take seriously international human rights abuses against Christians and other faith groups. This work needs to be continued in the next Parliament through:

  • Retaining and strengthening role of the Special Envoy on Freedom of Religion or Belief with necessary financial and administrative support.
  • Implementation of the recommendations of the Truro Review.
  • Prioritising the protection of Freedom of Religion and Belief and other human rights in trade negotiations and trade deals, regardless of the UK’s future relationship with the European Union.
  • Retaining the Foreign Secretary’s Human Rights Advisory Group, and ensure that there are at least three representatives from civil society which specialise on Freedom of Religion and Belief. (p16)

Alliance: “Alliance will continue to promote our unwavering commitment to freedom of, and from, religion across the world and opposing discrimination on the basis of religion or belief.” (p40)

Take action…

This is great news – but we still have time to push them further.

Tell your local candidate what you think today. Email your candidate and ask them to sign up to Open Doors’ election pledge:

Three asks