CRL Religious Freedom Survey

FOR SA encourages you to make a submission to the CRL Rights Commission (“CRL”) by participating in the Religious Freedom Survey.

The CRL is inviting the faith community to have your say on some of the most critical areas where, in FOR SA’s view, religious freedom is (or has been) in danger of erosion.

This is a RARE and IMPORTANT opportunity to bring the threats and problems the religious community faces to Government’s attention. For this reason, FOR SA wholeheartedly supports the objective of the Religious Freedom Survey and encourages you to participate by clicking here and completing the Survey today.

The deadline for submissions is 12:00 on Tuesday, 31 October 2023.

Your voice is important – and will be heard in Parliament!

Your submission will influence and inform the Report that the CRL will compile based upon the findings of the Survey.  This carries significant legal weight and will:

  1. Help to develop clear guidelines and highlight areas where there are apparent gaps in the protection of freedom of religion, conscience or belief, in Government policy and/or existing law (including how the law is implemented);
  2. Seek to inform and advise Government departments when drafting and implementing policy and/or legislation; and
  3. Provide information and recommendations to other state institutions, like the South African Human Rights Commission (“SAHRC”).

How to complete the CRL Religious Freedom Survey

When completing the survey, each question asks you to provide examples of whatever challenges to religious freedom you may have experienced.  To assist you in this, FOR SA provides draft responses to the relevant areas covered in the Survey’s questions.  You can then toggle back and forth to reference the draft responses that FOR SA has provided to assist you in completing the relevant questions asked in the Survey.

We suggest at this point you click here to open the Survey.

Draft responses

1. Do you believe that your rights and responsibilities to freedom of conscience, religion, thought, belief and opinion (“religious freedom”) as guaranteed by section 15 of the South African Constitution are properly considered, respected and protected in current/existing government policies and or legislation?
2. Do you think that your religion, beliefs and conscience are equally respected and protected by the State, in comparison to the other equality right grounds in section 9 of the Constitution (race, gender, sex, sexual orientation, age, disability, etc.)?
3. Are you able to freely express, celebrate and live out your conscience, religion, thought, belief and opinion in public (e.g., on social media, in the workplace, in school/university or in the way you operate your business), without fear of legal consequences, employment consequences, social persecution or bias?
4. Do you believe that you have been unfairly discriminated against because of living out and/or expressing your conscience, religion, thought, belief and opinions in public?
5. Do you believe that you can raise your children according to your values, faith, and beliefs without interference from current Government policies, legislation, guidelines or litigation?
Important note
The Survey also asks two important questions to gauge the level of responsibility that individuals and/or religious organisations demonstrate when exercising their religious freedom and related rights and to ascertain whether there is sufficient education provided around these responsibilities.

As responsible citizens, it is important to remember that each right we enjoy has its accompanying responsibility.