'Conscience in action’: how humanist activists shaped society | Humanist Heritage Launch Event
Since Humanists UK’s foundation in 1896, it’s been a persistent force against dogma and illiberalism, and it’s changed the country for the better. From reproductive rights to LGBT rights, from divorce to adoption, from healthcare to education: where humanists have won, the country has won.
But what of the stories less told, and those voices less heard? At this event, part of a year-long series to mark Humanists UK’s 125th anniversary, historians and long-time humanist activists will chart some key moments back to the 19th century, revealing how humanist activists shaped society.
Diane Munday became involved in the campaign to reform abortion law in the 1960s, following her own experience with abortion. She was a key member of the Abortion Law Reform Association and helped bring in Abortion Act 1967, and helped to set up the the British Pregnancy Advisory Service. She frequently gave speeches and wrote articles on the topics of abortion, pregnancy and family planning. Later, she became interested in the question of voluntary euthanasia, and has also spoken and written on that subject. She is a patron of Humanists UK.
David Pollock joined the humanist group at the University of Oxford in 1961. He served as trustee of Humanists UK from 1965 to 1975 (including two years as chair). He has, again, been a trustee of Humanists UK since 1997. He was President of the European Humanist Federation between 2006 and 2012, and was presented with Humanists International’s ‘Distinguished Service to Humanism’ award in 2011.
Andrew is Chief Executive of Humanists UK. He became Chief Executive in 2010 after five years coordinating Humanists UK’s education and public affairs work. Andrew is also current President of Humanists International.
Maddy is the Humanist Heritage Coordinator for Humanists UK, researching and writing about the history of humanism to celebrate the organisation's 125th birthday. She has a background in education, museums, and community history, and is also Humanists UK's Wikimedian in Residence.