For immediate release

December 7, 2018

The Effectiveness of STAND

STANDleague.org was launched in February 2017 in response to requests by Scientology parishioners for a platform that would enable them to speak out against and combat discrimination from bigoted news outlets. The site has since blossomed into a thriving outlet which, judging by the volume of its users and the positive responses it has received from Scientologists and non-Scientologists alike, has been a welcome contribution in the global conversation about discrimination, bigotry and religious freedom—their importance and their defense.

Los Angeles chapter STAND members at the Christmas reception 2018

STAND has published thousands of Media Watch letters—letters sent by Scientologists to media outlets demanding correction of bigoted statements or other instances of religious discrimination. As a direct result, over 70 such outlets have ceased their discriminatory conduct, with some demonstrating the courage to apologize for having spread such bigotry in the first place.

The STAND site features hundreds of topical, personal and enlightening blogs and news releases covering important religious persecution issues facing the international community of religions.

News items published by STAND have covered the Scientology legal victories in France and Germany protests against government intrusion into peaceful religious practices in Hungary, and interfaith conferences in the United States and Europe.

Many members of other (or no) faiths have written in to the site to express their support of STAND’s work in pursuit of its purpose: “To end forever the defamation and bigotry toward Scientologists and the Scientology religion and to protect everyone’s basic inalienable right to practice their chosen faith.”

One such example came from a man in Oregon: “I'm not personally a Scientologist, but I support religious freedom for all. I follow STAND on Facebook and have shared your website with a friend who sucked up everything he heard on [Leah Remini’s] show. He thanked me for the link and has not posted a thing about the show after I showed him the clip of [Remini] herself admitting there is ‘no vetting’ of the claims made in her show. I'll continue to ‘STAND’ by you. Thanks for all you do.”

And another, after the author’s receipt of a letter pointing out the bigotry contained in his article:

“Thank you for your note…. My intent was not to offend anyone, so for that I'm sorry.”

Another, a major credit institution, wrote: “I can confirm that we are no longer advertising on the show you mentioned as our ad was placed in error by our media buying agency.”

Numerous former advertisers on A&E network’s Aftermath show have repeatedly conveyed to STAND that they regret allowing their name to be associated with bigots like Remini. One large international retail company wrote: “The airing of one of our commercials on the program in question was an oversight, and we’ve taken action to correct.”

Another, a major credit institution, wrote: “I can confirm that we are no longer advertising on the show you mentioned as our ad was placed in error by our media buying agency.”

Yet another stated: “Following the outreach from members of your organization last September, our company added the Leah Remini: Scientology and the Aftermath to our ‘do not air’ list and updated our media buying guidelines to exclude programs that feature content like that.”

“We are proud of the changes we are making,” said Edward Parkin, STAND International Director. “We thank our supporters for standing with us, we thank every fighter for religious freedom for raising that vital torch, and we will carry on until our mutual dream of true and universal religious freedom is made a reality.”

Take Action

COMBAT HATE SPEECH
& DISINFORMATION

If you have encountered hate speech and disinformation online, in the media, or in any public venue, take action by reporting it here.

PROMOTE
FREEDOM OF RELIGION

Urge adoption of the Charter on Journalistic Ethics in Relation to Respect for Religion or Belief. Make your voice heard.

ABOLISH DISCRIMINATION
OF ANY KIND

The first step in fighting intolerance and discrimination is raising awareness. Report discrimination of any kind to STAND here

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