Frank Field MP
Your MP for Birkenhead
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A Social Highway Code: The Church of England’s last gift to the English nation?


17 February 2017
Commons Chamber The Church is today presented with a plan to re-establish its guiding role, with the help of all the major world religions and Humanism, in the everyday lives of British citizens.

In his Henley Henson lecture delivered last night at the University of Durham, Frank argued that the decline of Christianity’s code of conduct in this country has not been replaced by a new code to which the vast majority of citizens willingly subscribe. The effects of this failure are all too obvious – a marked increase in incivility, greed and antisocial behaviour.

He set out how, despite clear differences, the major world religions agree overwhelmingly on the rules of the good life. By codifying these areas of ethical overlap into a new Social Highway Code, and gaining wider acceptance for the teaching of the Code in Britain’s schools, the Church can lead on the rebuilding of the social capital that Christianity once gave all of us and, maybe, in the process, reverse its own decline.

Frank said: ‘I believe there is a widespread wish, and also a widespread agreement, amongst citizens on such a Social Highway Code, which could safely be taught in schools. I believe there is an agreement amongst all the major religions, and Humanists, on what the basis of the good life is and therefore the Social Highway Code that should be sought to achieve that end.’

‘I have called together in Liverpool representatives of all the religions practising in this country, as a pilot to begin work on this project. The Anglican Bishop of Liverpool, Paul Bayes, the Archbishop of Liverpool, Malcolm McMahon, together with representatives of Judaism, Islam, Sikhism, Hinduism, Methodism, Buddhism, and the Humanists, will be meeting on the 23rd of February to begin work on what that agreed Social Highway Code might look like.’

ENDS

For further information please contact Michael Pollitt in Frank Field MP’s office on michael.pollitt@parliament.uk or 0207 219 0601.


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