Scientology And Me

December 11, 2009

French Scientology Members Celebrate UN Human Rights Year of Learning

Filed under: Church of Scientology,human rights — Louanne @ 2:45 am
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cientology volunteers across France are promoting human rights education, in support of the United Nations International Year of Human Rights Learning that began on December 10, 2008. The day is also marked as Human Rights Day, in honor of the United Nation’s adoption of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) in 1948, a document drafted by a UN Committee chaired by Eleanor Roosevelt to protect human rights and fundamental freedoms.

Champions of human rights for decades, Churches of Scientology have spearheaded human rights reforms since the 1950s and in partnership with Youth for Human Rights International have distributed over 1.5 million human rights educational publications and obtained over 200,000 signatures in support of human rights education.

In France, volunteers of Scientology Churches are gearing up for Human Rights Day 2009 after a year of weekly human rights education events in Paris, Lyons, Marseilles, Vannes, Clermont-Ferrand, and Nice. Dedicating more than 5,000 man-hours to the cause over the past year, the young activists estimate they have promoted the UDHR to more than 48,000 people in France in 2009.

In addition to gaining support from individuals for human rights education through petition drives, the youth have distributed human rights booklets at music concerts, discussed actions to counter racial discrimination on a radio program and created their own song and dance performances demonstrating the UDHR article on Freedom of Expression. The volunteers also supported UN General-Secretary Ban Ki Moon’s call for a global ceasefire on the International Day of Peace, by distributing booklets at the Esplanade des Droits de l’Homme (Esplanade of Human Rights) where a monument commemorates the UN General Assembly’s adoption of the Universal Declaration.

“Human rights are something everyone needs to know,” said one volunteer. “Then you make sure everybody’s human rights are respected, including your own.”

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October 24, 2009

Scientology members in Society

What do Scientologists do for society?
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Since the founding of the first Church of Scientology in 1954, Scientologists have been actively involved in the improvement of their communities and society.

The Scientology Church has received thousands of awards and commendations for its work in communities all over the world. Many of these awards have come from city and county authorities; others from individuals and groups who appreciated a helping hand. Awards are always valued, but they are incidental to the intention and the deed they symbolize. Scientologists help because as they grow spiritually as individuals, it is natural to expand their responsibility and turn outward to help others.

Church members are active in anti-drug educational campaigns in countries throughout the world and have given drug abuse education lectures to more than 500,000 people. Scientologists in Germany, France, Switzerland, Denmark, Belgium, Holland, Austria, Sweden, Norway, Italy and the United Kingdom also lead success popular “Say No to Drugs, Say Yes to Life” campaigns.

Top athletes, including Philips, Italy’s most famous volleyball team, and the legendary Spanish football team Real Madrid, have given their support to this campaign by signing the “Say No to Drugs, Say Yes to Life” Honor Roll. Scientologists in Switzerland, France, Germany, Spain and other European countries have organized concerts, marches and other events to promote the Church’s anti-drug message and have reached hundreds of thousands.

October 1, 2009

Landmark Church of Scientology Decision Protecting Religious Freedom Against Russia in European Court of Human Rights

Today, the European Court of Human Rights ruled unanimously in favour of two Scientology religious groups in Russia,  finding they have the right to be registered as religious organizations under Russian law. The decision determined that these groups, the Church of Scientology of Surgut and the Church of Scientology of Niznekamsk, have the right to religious freedom and the right of freedom of association under articles 9 and 11 of the European Human Rights Convention.

In reaching this decision, the Court “established that the applicants were unable to obtain recognition and effective enjoyment of their rights to freedom of religion and association in any organizational form. The first applicant could not obtain registration of the Scientology group as a non-religious legal entity because it was considered to be a religious community by the Russian authorities. The applications for registration as a religious organisation submitted by the first and second applicants as founders of their respective groups and also on behalf of the third applicant were denied by reference to the insufficient period of the groups’ existence.  Finally, the restricted status of a religious group for which they qualified and in which the third applicant existed conveyed no practical or effective benefits to them as such a group was deprived of legal personality, property rights and the legal capacity to protect the interests of its members and was also severely hampered in the fundamental aspects of its religious functions.  Accordingly, the Court finds that there has been an interference with the applicants’ rights under Article 9 interpreted in the light of Article 11.”

Along with the 2007 decision of the Court in favor of the right of the Moscow Church of Scientology to be registered as a religious organization under the Religion law, these cases represent precedent-setting rulings that guarantee the freedom of religion and right of association for Scientologists and people of all faiths throughout the forty-seven nations that comprise the Council of Europe.

The Court concluded that “In the light of the foregoing considerations, the Court finds that the interference with the applicants’ rights to freedom of religion and association cannot be said to have been “necessary in a democratic society”. There has therefore been a violation of Article 9 of the Convention, interpreted in the light of Article 11″.

Nina de Kastro, spokesperson of the Church of Scientology of Russia, praised the Court’s ruling saying, “This decision not only confirms the rights of Churches of Scientology in Russia, but sets another important precedent to protect the rights of all other religious communities in Europe.”

The Russian Scientology Church in St. Petersburg also has cases pending in the European Court of Human Rights for similar discriminatory harassment concerning their registration.

The Scientology religion was founded by L. Ron Hubbard. The first Church was established in the United States in 1954.  It has grown to more than 8,000 Churches, Missions and groups and ten million members in 165 nations. The Russian Federation has more than 73 Scientology Churches and Missions from St. Petersburg to Vladivostok.

For more information about Scientology, see www.scientology-moscow.ru or www.scientology.org.

September 29, 2009

Young Scientology member Races for Human Right


Recognized at the 6th Annual Youth for Human Rights Summit in Geneva last week, race car driver and Scientologist Niki Lanik explains why he promotes human rights to racing enthusiasts.

Austrian-born race car driver and Scientologist Niki Lanik, 22, uses his sport to champion human rights.  Recognized with a Human Rights Advocate Award last week at the 6th Annual Human Rights Summit in Geneva, Switzerland, Lanik has been an advocate since December 2006. It was then he decided to use his high profile as a successful driver to raise awareness about human rights.  Says Lanik,  “Athletes have fans and followers who read about us or see us on TV.  Youngsters see us and musicians and artists as role models.  It’s important to me that I live up to that trust.”

Lanik’s dedication to promoting human rights awareness and education came after meeting Los Angeles-based film director Taron Lexton in London three years ago.  Lexton directed a series of Public Service Announcements (PSAs) which bring the 30 articles of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights to life.  Lexton also created “United,” an award-winning music video about a young boy from the inner city who unites people from around the world to defend the rights of his friends. These films are part of the human rights awareness campaign of Youth for Human Rights International.

“I thought I knew what human rights are, but I really had no idea until I watched the PSAs and read the booklet that goes with them,” says Lanik.  “Human rights education works, and it changes countries and cultures.  I want to see every village, city and state around the world, poor or rich, black or white, with human rights education as part of their educational curriculums.”

Once he got the point he took on the issue with the same energy that made him a double UK Clio Cup Winter Champion in 2006 and 2007 and won him a place three months ago in the FIA GT3 Championship with the six-man Belgium-based Prospeed race team.

Lanik displays the Youth For Human Rights International logo on his race car, gives out booklets and DVDs to fans and sponsors and plays the PSAs at the race track.  “I promote human rights because I strongly believe every kid has the right to education; I believe that slavery should not exist and that everybody should have the same opportunities.  I insist on a fair world where people of all races can unite and work together, live together and have no quarrels and wars.”

With some 18 million people each year seeing the logo on his car when they watch races on TV, Lanik wants them to ask themselves, “What are human rights?” and go to www.youthforhumanrights.org to find out.

“By our insisting that human rights be part of the curriculum for youth in every country on Earth, we can really make a difference,” says Lanik.  He draws his inspiration from these words of Scientology Founder L. Ron Hubbard: “Human Rights must be made a fact, not an idealistic dream.”

For more information, visit Youthfor HumanRights.org.

July 7, 2009

Scientology Promotes Human Rights in Taiwan

Scientology missions throughout Taiwan conduct human rights education programs in local schools.

As Scientology churches and missions are committed to human rights, staff and volunteers throughout Taiwan are carrying out a human rights education campaign so children and teenagers learn what human rights are and what they can do to ensure these rights exist for everyone.

Although the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights was signed and adopted more than 60 years ago by all member nations of the United Nations, human rights abuses abound in countries throughout the world.

The first step in eradicating abuses in human rights is education in what these rights are, as it is impossible to enforce these rights without knowing what they are.

Using a series of short films that convey the essence of each of the articles of the Universal Declaration, these volunteers bring human rights to life to children throughout the nation.

The work they did in just one recent week shows how determined Taiwanese Scientologists are to bring about human rights reforms.

One volunteer held a petition-signing event in the area around the Taichung Primary School, where 107 students signed a petition to support the implementation of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

That same week, another volunteer held a workshop at the Zing-Mei Elementary school where she trained 15 teachers on how to teach their students about human rights.

Yet another Scientologist gave a human rights lecture at the Shia-Ying Junior High School to 600 students. The mother of a student at the Wen-Fu Elementary school lectured 27 students on the subject and a Scientology staff member lectures 123 students at the Chong-Yi Elementary school on the 30 rights laid out by the Universal Declaration.

The work of these Taiwanese Scientologists is part of an international human rights education campaign. Scientology founder, L. Ron Hubbard wrote, “Human rights must be made a fact, not an idealistic dream,” and Scientologists in Taiwan and in countries around the world are working to make this dream come true.

For more information on the work Scientology is doing to promote human rights visit the Scientology video channel.

March 2, 2009

Will those Germans ever learn to spell “Human Rights”?

Press release found on menschenrechtsbuero.de:

n a landmark decision for religious freedom in Germany, the Berlin Administrative Court ordered the immediate removal of anti-Scientology propaganda placed by the Berlin City Administration in front of the Church of Scientology of Berlin.

Shortly after dark on the evening of January 21, 2009, Berlin city officials placed a kiosk in front of the Berlin Scientology Church urging the public to “STOP SCIENTOLOGY,” and containing anti-Scientology propaganda.

The Court found that the City’s actions violated the Church of Scientology’s right to religious freedom under Article 4 of the Constitution. In reaching these conclusions, the Court held that the City of Berlin had violated its duty of religious neutrality and its obligation to remain objective on religious matters. The Court also ruled that the City’s warning campaign served no justifiable purpose.

City officials were forced to rapidly remove the offensive kiosk.

Berliner Saeule Litfass Saeule

“The City’s actions amount to a hate campaign in complete violation of the law,” said Sabine Weber, president of the Church of Scientology of Berlin. “We are happy that the Court has reaffirmed the our right to religious freedom.”

The Church of Scientology is recognized as a religious community throughout the world, including such countries as Spain, Sweden, Portugal, Hungary, Italy, USA, Australia, New Zealand, Canada and many other countries. In the last 30 years German courts have acknowledged the religious character of the Church of Scientology in more than 50 decisions.

Download the judgement (German)! Press release pack with more photos (zip)

February 21, 2009

Church of Scientology: Human Rights Celebrated in South Africa

Marking the 60th Anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the Church of Scientology of South Africa teamed up with the national chapter of Youth for Human Rights International to raise awareness of human rights and secure commitments from community leaders to make 2009 a better human rights year for all South Africans.

Youth for Human Rights (YHR) gave a presentation to teachers representing 14 schools in the Durban township of Kwa Mashu, one of the oldest black urban settlements in the region, with a population of 1.5 million and an estimated 80% unemployment rate among youth.

Prior to the presentation the teachers were asked what are the greatest problems they face in their classrooms. The answers were peer pressure, bullying, violence and crime, with the underlying problem of lack of self-esteem and opportunity for many otherwise bright students.

The teachers’ response was very positive after viewing YHR’s (Youth for Human Rights) powerful audio-visual Public Service Announcements that bring to life all 30 rights of the Universal Declaration. Accompanying illustrated booklets of these rights were distributed to the teachers and YHR’s volunteer team was invited back to give presentations to all teachers of the 24 schools in the township. The teachers further committed to work with YHR and see that human rights education is delivered to all their students throughout 2009.

In Johannesburg a forum was held at the Civic Center attended by 50 youth representing the various regions of the city. The President of the Church of Scientology of Johannesburg opened the event, followed by a speaker from the Department of Youth & Development, an agency of the city’s Social Services, who spoke about the importance of human rights education and the need for youth to take on activist roles to raise awareness of human rights. The second speaker was the head of the Soweto chapter of YHR. He outlined the activities of YHR throughout the year and the plans for 2009, pointing out that widespread teaching of human rights can combat rampant rights violations depressing every sector of the society.

The Universal Declaration of Human Rights was adopted and proclaimed on December 10, 1948, by the General Assembly of the United Nations. Following this historic act the Assembly called upon all member countries to publicize the Declaration and “to cause it to be disseminated, displayed, read and expounded principally in schools and other educational institutions, without distinction based on the political status of countries or territories.”

December 27, 2008

Scientology: Discrimination must be abolished

Throughout the last decades, the Church of Scientology has taken numerous actions to promote the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights.  To this end, a series of public service announcements (PSAs) was created, each of which features a child envisioning the type of world he or she will grow up into. The PSAs promote the need to learn and apply the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

Most recently a new human rights education film was released as well. More information about that on 60thanniversary.org and humanrights.com.

But the Church of Scientology Human Rights Department not only supports human rights education but also actively fights discrimination.

Check out this article about Scientology discrimination and the reactions of the international human rights community.

December 15, 2008

Church of Scientology and Ambassadors Celebrate Universal Declaration of Human Rights 60th Anniversary

The Church of Scientology International Celebrated International Human Rights Day and the United Nations 60th Anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights with Global Events in over 28 Nations

The Human Rights Department at the Church of Scientology International took part in celebrating the 60th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

Human rights celebrations were held in more than 28 nations. These events were aimed at bringing about greater awareness of basic human rights and human rights abuses and violations across the globe.

The Department of Education of Taiwan talked about human rights education in Tapei, playing public service announcements depicting the 30 articles of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights to elementary school students. Dignitaries and volunteers in Taichung and Kaoshiung pledged to improve human rights education.
In Melbourne and Sydney, thousands participated in concerts celebrating Human Rights Day. In Johannesburg, youth officials held a summit discussing implementing the Universal Declaration in South Africa.

The Church of Scientology European Human Rights Office organized a concert celebration in Brussels composed of European Union officials and members of the diplomatic corps, including eight Ambassadors and concerned civil society organizations. The group also previewed “The Story of Human Rights,” an upcoming film that traces the evolution of human rights from 500 B.C.

The Universal Declaration of Human Rights was adopted by the United Nations General Assembly on December 10, 1948 as an expression of the determination of nations that the human rights atrocities and genocide perpetrated during World War II would never happen again. The Declaration, and the recognition of its importance on Human Rights Day, represents a time for all individuals and organizations to renew their efforts to achieve human rights for all.

The Church of Scientology has been a vocal force in international human rights over the past 40 years. Since 2001, Scientology churches have sponsored one of the world’s largest non-governmental human rights education campaigns, producing a wide range of multimedia tools including publications, curricula, and award-winning public service announcements to make each article of the UDHR understandable by young people and adults.

To learn more about the Church of Scientology’s human rights activities, visit scientology.org. Find out more about the human rights education campaign supported by the Church of Scientology and its members by going to humanrights.com.

December 10, 2008

French Scientology Members on a campaign against drugs

Members of Scientology churches and missions in France are serious about bringing an end to substance abuse in their country.

Members of Scientology churches and missions in France are serious about bringing an end to substance abuse in their country.

Spurred on by a recent report of a three percent drop in cannabis use among young adults in France, a group of Scientologists in Paris and Marseilles spent their weekend encouraging young people to say no to drugs.

Parisian Scientologists cycled through their city to put an end to drug abuse.

In Paris, a team of 24 volunteers started their bicycle campaign at the famous Bastille. Then it was on to Rue de Rivoli, Châtelet-Les-Halles and the Hôtel de Ville. But popular tourist centers were far from their only target. They cycled through Paris neighborhoods notorious for cannabis dealing and consumption. Along the way, they stopped and talked to young people, and passed out over 3,000 copies of the booklet called The Truth about Drugs.

Volunteers from the Church of Scientology of Paris and the Church of Scientology Mission of Marseilles pass out thousands of drug education booklets to help people learn the truth about drugs.

Marseilles gained international notoriety in the 1960’s and 70s as the “French Connection”—the bulk of heroin that hit US streets during that era was smuggled through the city. Members of the Church of Scientology Mission of Marseilles are dedicated to making their city drug free. So the same weekend that Paris Scientologists held their anti-drug bicycle tour, Marseilles Scientologists cycled through the old harbor and shopping streets of Marseilles, getting The Truth about Drugs booklets into the hands of people all along their route.

Scientology churches sponsor the largest non-governmental anti-drug information and prevention campaign on Earth. The Church of Scientology offers its publications (which neither contain nor advocate Scientology beliefs) to like-minded anti-drug coalitions, government institutions, civic groups and schools. Anyone wishing to use these educational materials, including 16 public service films on the devastating effects of the most commonly abused drugs, can order them free of charge from the web site of the Foundation for a Drug Free World.

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