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Anorak | Should Church goers get free parking?

Should Church goers get free parking?

by | 5th, June 2013

parking

CHURCHGOERS park for free on Sundays between 7am and 1pm in Woking, Surrey.

But  The National Secular Society says Woking Borough Council’s policy is unfair. It says it’s discrimination on the grounds of religion and belief and that it contravened the Equality Act

Keith Porteous Wood, executive director of the NSS, said:

“The equal treatment of all, regardless of belief or non-belief, is a key secular principle.  We have launched this challenge to preferential treatment of worshippers because it is neither legitimate nor lawful for local government to subsidise the activities of any particular religion and belief group. It would be fairer if the council either charged worshippers for parking, as they do everyone else, or provided free parking for all.”

But others also get parking perks. The council’s website tells us:

GREENS

Differential charging levels for season tickets, based on a vehicle’s CO² emission rating (determined by the Vehicle Certification Agency).  A 50% discount on the price of car park season tickets is applied for vehicles that produce the lowest emissions (CO² band A), and a 25% discount for vehicles in band B.  Vehicles with a band G rating (the highest band) pay a 25% surcharge.

DISABLED

Blue Badge holders may register with Woking Borough Council so that they can be issued with a proximity card which will permit entry and exit to the car park without the need to draw a ticket at the barrier or use the “pay on foot” paystations.

In addition, Blue Badge Holders may:

Park on single and double yellow lines for up to 3 hours, except where loading restrictions apply and

Park in pay and display/voucher parking bays without payment for an unlimited period, except where those bays are suspended or become evening taxi ranks.

BIKERS

Motorcycles, scooters and mopeds may be parked free of charge in the following town centre car parks…

SOME WORKERS

I am undertaking work at a location and want to park my vehicle in a restricted area how do I obtain a dispensation?
A Waiver Certificate may be issued to allow a commercial vehicle (van, truck or lorry – not a private motor vehicle, estate car or 4×4) to park on a single yellow line during the hours of restriction if there is a proven need that the presence of the vehicle is required to enable the driver to carry out his work and not just as a means of providing somewhere for the vehicle to be parked.

So much discrimination. As local man Mark Robertson, 57, says:

“If you are going to give one group of people free parking then you need to give it to them all.”

Working responds :

Places of worship, and the faith communities that they serve, play an important role, both in society in general and Woking in particular. They encourage people to participate in society, thereby promoting social inclusion

They also the policy is open to all faith groups . The Secular Society may care to rebrand themselves as

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Posted: 5th, June 2013 | In: News Comment | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed: RSS 2.0 | TrackBack | Permalink