Opinion Poll backs Cardinal's concerns.  

An opinion poll commissioned by the Catholic Church in Scotland has shown that most Scots agree with the concerns raised by Cardinal Keith O'Brien recently, that;  

graphic sex education should not be given to pre-school or primary school children,  

the morning after pill shouldn't be given in confidence to girls under 16 without parental consent, and  

abstinence-based approaches to sex education should be piloted in Scottish schools.  

Cardinal O'Brien recently called for all approaches to sex education to include guidance on basic moral values.  

The poll was designed by the Opinion Research Business (ORB) and the questioning carried out by System 3 of a representative sample of close to 997 adults from 30th September to 7th October.  

When asked, whether sex and relationship education, resources and approaches which use graphic imagery or intimate questions be used;  

in preschools, 90% said no,  
in primary schools, 55% said no.  

On the question of the morning after pill, 55% of the population do not think it should be made available in confidence to school girls (under 16) without parental consent. Among parents of schoolgirls, opposition is even greater.  

Lastly, two thirds of Scots favour the introduction of abstinence-based approaches to sexual health in Scottish schools.  

(The full results are shown below. )  

Reacting to the poll findings, Cardinal Keith O'Brien said;  

"These findings are extremely encouraging and leave me greatly reassured, that my concerns are widely held. On Sunday 29 August 2004, I addressed the issue of Scotland s sexual health strategy, I suggested, that sexual health policy in Scotland was in crisis. The debate that followed, created more heat than light and although some sought to play down my concerns, many more, from all walks of life endorsed them."  

"Although the First Minister and Health Minister issued reassuring statements, I felt compelled to seek detailed clarification on a number of key issues. On Wednesday 8 September, I asked for urgent clarification, on a number of issues which remain of intense interest to me and to those who have written to me. I asked for confirmation that sex and relationships education resources and approaches which use suggestive role-playing, graphic imagery or intimate questioning will not be used in pre-school or primary schools and that no approach will be used in isolation from any guidance on basic moral values.  

I also asked for confirmation that The Morning After Pill will not be made available in confidence to schoolchildren without parental consent, either within schools or facilitated by health workers in and around schools  

At the same time, I asked if abstinence-based approaches, would as a matter of urgency now be piloted in Scotland."  

Cardinal O'Brien added;  

"To date I have received no response to my request for these clarifications.  
I wrote to the then Minister for Health, Malcolm Chisholm on 22 September with my request and would be grateful for a reply from his successor or the First Minister.  

Cardinal O'Brien concluded;  

"Clearly, I am far from alone in expressing serious doubts about the direction of sexual health policy in this country. When a majority of Scots disapprove of or disagree with current approaches in this field and two thirds of the population suggest it is time to change direction on sexual health, I think it is incumbent on our politicians, to listen and to respond."  

Further comment on the results came from Dr Salah Beltagui, Scottish Chair of the Muslim  
Association of Britain:  

"We're not at all surprised at the results as it is clear that the  
policies pursued over the last few years have made matters worse rather  
than better. Before things slide any further, it is time for those  
advocating the current policies to admit defeat and pursue sex education  
within a more moral framework."  


Peter Kearney  
Catholic Media Office  
5 St. Vincent Place  
G1 2DH  
0141 221 1168  

Poll Results  

1. Should sex and relationship education, resources and approaches which use graphic imagery or intimate questions be used in:  

Yes No Don t Know  

% % %  

Preschools 7 90 4  

Primary schools 39 55 6  

2. Do you agree that the morning after pill should be made available in confidence to school girls (under 16) without parental consent?  


36 Agree  

55 Disagree  

9 Don't Know  

3. How much would you favour an abstinence-based approach to sexual health being piloted in Scottish schools?  


39 Strongly support  

26 Support a little  

12 Oppose a little  

11 Strongly oppose  

12 Don t know  

Subscribe to Updates

Subscribe to:
Like   Back to Top   Seen 89 times   Liked 0 times

Subscribe to Updates

If you enjoyed this, why not subscribe to free email updates ?

Subscribe to News updates

Enter your email address to be notified of new posts:

Subscribe to:

Alternatively, you can subscribe via RSS

‹ Return to News

We never share or sell your email address to anyone.

I've already subscribed / don't show me this again

Recent Posts

Funeral Arrangements for Archbishop Emeritus Keith Patrick Cardinal O?Brien RIP

| 24 hours ago | Blogging

The Requiem Mass of Cardinal Keith Patrick O?Brien RIP will take place at the Church of St Michael, Westmoreland Road, Newcastle on Thursday 5 April at 1.00pm. As requested by the Holy See, the main celebrant and homilist will be His Eminence Cardinal Vincent Nichols, Archbishop of Westminster. Donations to SCIAF?s Lenten campaign in lieu of flowers please. ? ? The internment of the body of the late Cardinal O?Brien will then take place at Mount Vernon Cemetery, Edinburgh on 6 April at 1.00pm The Cardinal?s body will be laid to rest in the grave of his mother and father. This was in accordance with wishes expressed by Cardinal O?Brien himself. ? ? ENDS ? ? Notes to Editors: ? ? For more information, call David Kerr, Director of Communications, Archdiocese of St Andrews & Edinburgh on 07903 621232. ? ? ? The funeral arrangements were agreed following consultation with the family of Cardinal O?Brien, the executor of his will, and the Holy See as represented by Cardinal Vincent Nichols, Archbishop of Westminster. ? ? At the request of the family, there will be no stills or video photography and no audio recording during the Requiem Mass. A media representative will be in the church to report on a pooled basis. Details of this arrangement to be confirmed soon. The text of Cardinal Nichol?s homily will be issued to the media too.? ?...

Dunkeld Priest to become Spiritual Director of the Pontifical Scots College in Rome

| 3 days ago | Blogging

Fr James Walls, currently parish priest of St. Pius X parish in Dundee, has been appointed by the Scottish Bishops’ Conference as Spiritual Director of the Pontifical Scots College in Rome.      Commenting on the appointment, Bishop Stephen Robson, the Bishop of Dunkeld said:       “I am absolutely delighted that the Bishops have decided to appoint Father James Walls as spiritual director to the Pontifical Scots College in Rome. As a former Spiritual Director in Rome myself, I can recognise great qualities, spiritual, intellectual and moral in Fr Jim’s priestly ministry.  He has been well trained in spiritual direction and accompaniment, and together with his pastoral experience as parish priest in a large North Dundee Catholic Parish Community, I believe him to be an ideal choice to serve the community of seminarians there and as an effective collaborator with Fr Fitzpatrick the Rector and Fr Parkes the Vice Rector.”        Bishop Robson added;       “Fr Jim will be going to Rome, Salamanca and for training in the USA from the end of May onwards and will take up his new role in September. Fr Jim has my full support and I wish him many blessings and congratulations.”        Reacting to his appointment, Fr. James Walls, said:       “I would like to give thanks to God, and the bishops of Scotland, in appointing me as Spiritual Director in the Scots College. I would also like to give thanks to my brother and sister-in-law for taking my mum into their home; without this generosity, the decision would have been much more difficult. I look forward to getting to know those men who have generously put themselves forward for the priesthood.”       Responding to the appointment, Fr. Dan Fitzpatrick, Rector of the Scots College said:       “I am very grateful to Fr Jim for generously accepting the post of spiritual director here at the Pontifical Scots College. He brings with him his experience of parish ministry, spiritual direction and priestly life. I am sure he will find great joy and fulfilment in his important role of helping the men here in the College discern and prepare for service as priests in Scotland.  As the community gets ready to welcome him, I would also like to thank Fr Mark Cassidy, our departing spiritual director, for his hard work, enthusiasm and positive contribution to our seminarians and to the College during his seven years here. Our prayers are with him as he returns to the Diocese of Dunkeld and I would like to thank Bishop Stephen Robson for his on-going support for the College.”       ENDS   Peter Kearney  Director  Catholic Media Office  5 St. Vincent Place  Glasgow  G1 2DH  0141 221 1168 07968 122291   Note to Editors:   1. An image of Fr. Walls can be downloaded here:

Scottish bishops offer condolences to Cardinal’s family and friends

| 4 days ago | Blogging

The President and Vice-President of the Bishops’ Conference of Scotland, Archbishop Philip Tartaglia and Bishop Joseph Toal have offered their condolences on the death, earlier today (Monday 19 March 2017) of Cardinal Keith O’Brien.     Archbishop Tartaglia said;     “We have received the sad news of the death of Cardinal Keith O’Brien, Emeritus Archbishop of  St Andrews & Edinburgh.  On behalf of the Bishops’ Conference of Scotland I wish to express my sincere sympathy on the death of the late Cardinal to his family and close friends. I ask for prayers for the repose of his soul. May he rest in peace.”     Bishop Toal said;     “I will pray for the eternal repose of the soul of Cardinal Keith Patrick O’Brien, who died early this morning – may he rest in God’s peace. I extend my sympathy and prayerful support to his family, friends and all who mourn his passing. With constant hope in the Lord’s goodness and mercy.”     ENDS     Peter Kearney  Director  Catholic Media Office  5 St. Vincent Place  Glasgow  G1 2DH  0141 221 1168 07968 122291

Archbishop Emeritus Keith Patrick Cardinal O’Brien (1938-2018) RIP

| 5 days ago | Blogging

Death Notice   Archbishop Emeritus Keith Patrick Cardinal O’Brien (1938-2018) RIP     At 1am on Monday 19 March 2018, His Eminence Keith Patrick Cardinal O’Brien, Archbishop Emeritus of St Andrews & Edinburgh, died at the Royal Victoria Hospital in Newcastle-upon-Tyne surrounded by family and friends and fortified by the rites of Holy Church. RIP. He was 80 years old.     Commenting upon the news, Archbishop Leo Cushley of St Andrews & Edinburgh said: “In life, Cardinal O’Brien may have divided opinion – in death, however, I think all can be united in praying for the repose of his soul, for comfort for his grieving family and that support and solace be given to those whom he offended, hurt and let down. May he rest in peace.” ENDS Notes to Editors: 1.   For more information, contact David Kerr, Director of Communications for the Archdiocese of St Andrews & Edinburgh, on 07903 621232 m.     2.   Archbishop Leo Cushley will be available for interview at 11am at the Gillis Centre, 100 Strathearn Road, Edinburgh, EH9 1BB.     3.   CV of Archbishop Emeritus Keith Patrick Cardinal O’Brien: Born at Ballycastle, Co. Antrim, Ireland, 17 March 1938, educated St Patrick’s High School, Dumbarton, Holy Cross Academy, Edinburgh; University of Edinburgh (BSc, 1959; Dip.Ed., 1966); St Andrew’s College, Drygrange; ordained priest at Edinburgh, 3rd April 1965, assistant priest, Holy Cross, Edinburgh 1965- 66; St Bride’s, Cowdenbeath and Chaplain to St Columba’s Secondary School 1966-71; St Patrick’s, Kilsyth, 1972-75; St Mary’s, Bathgate 1975-78; spiritual di- rector, St Andrew’s College, Drygrange 1978-80; rector, St Mary’s College, Blairs 1980-85; nominated Archbishop of St Andrews & Edinburgh 30 May 1985, and ordained by Cardinal Gordon Gray, Archbishop Emeritus of St Andrews & Edinburgh, at Edinburgh, 5 August 1985. Apostolic Administrator of the Diocese of Argyll & the Isles 1996-99; created Cardinal 21 October 2003. Resigned as Archbishop of St Andrews & Edinburgh 25 February 2013.     4.   Following a series of allegations relating to his personal life, Cardinal O’Brien resigned as Archbishop of St Andrews & Edinburgh 25 February 2013 and issued a media release on 3 March 2013 in which he announced his retirement from public life, stating: “I wish to take this opportunity to admit that there have been times that my sexual conduct has fallen below the standards expected of me as a priest, archbishop and cardinal. To those I have offended, I apologise and ask forgiveness. To the Catholic Church and people of Scotland, I also apologise. I will now spend the rest of my life in retirement. I will play no further part in the public life of the Catholic Church in Scotland." With the agreement of the Holy See, he subsequently moved to the north of England. 5.  Following an apostolic visitation to Scotland led by Archbishop Charles Scicluna of Malta, the Holy See announced on 20 March 2015 that Pope Francis had "accepted the resignation of Cardinal Keith Patrick O’Brien from the rights and duties of a Cardinal". The Holy See Press Office O'Brien stated that Cardinal O’Brien would not take part in future papal elections, act as papal adviser, or take part in Vatican congregations and councils and would lose other roles of a cardinal. 6.  Funeral arrangements for Cardinal O’Brien are still to be finalised but will be done so in coming days in consultation with the Holy See and Cardinal O’Brien’s family. 7.    Suggested commentators and potential interviewees for the media;       * Ian Dunn, former Editor of the Scottish Catholic Observer. Ian was 10 years with the Scottish Catholic Observer until January 2018. Tel: 07908 871858   * John Deighan, former Parliamentary Officer for the Bishops’ Conference of Scotland. John worked alongside Cardinal O’Brien for many ...