It's OK not to believe!
Secular Humanist Society Gibraltar
2015 Electoral Wish-List proposes tax-reform
SHSG present both parties with proposal that would allow individualss to select community funding
The opening salvo in this topical and very important campaign was fired in the busy days during the run-up to the elections. The SHSG committee decided that they would propose a tax legislation amendment that would remove the burden of financial aid to religious organisations locally, and place the onus on the individual taxpayer, as to how he or she wishes their contributions to be allocated.
In order to focus on a single campaign issue, an open letter was sent to The Chief Minister of Gibraltar, The Hon. Fabian Picardo, inviting him to disclose information on how the public purse funded religious organisations, if at all. This was no more than a question by concerned taxpayers, regarding the use of their contributions, although some members of the community misinterpreted it as an attack on the church and religion in general, whereas, nothing could ne further from the truth.
The SHSG wish to establish what is being spent, on whose behalf and that this spending is fair and reasonable in terms of the representative wishes of the taxpayer. We hold firm to our ideals of fairness and parity for all, with no one faction gaining unilateral advantage over one or more other groups by reason of majority membership. In our proposals, individuals would have autonomy over they way in which their tamable contribution were spent in this particular arena, which would benefit them and their chosen group, but would not burden them with having to fund other organisations for which they may have no interest.
With cordial efficiency the GSLP leader offered our representatives a meeting on Thursday 12th November 2015 to discuss the letter and to open a dialogue that may level the playing field with regard to funding of religious organisations in general.
The meeting went extremely well and the Chief Minister was very receptive and open to discussion regarding funding, and the highly credible proposals set out by SHSG representatives Anthony Hodgetts & Bryan Ritchie were well recieved. The meeting finished on an extremely cordial note and we believe the way is now paved for further productive and fruitful talks on this and other subjects with Mr Picardo in the future.
The SHSG wish to thank the Chief Minister for his kind attention and for making time to allow us a consultation at such a busy time, considering the elections are just around the corner.