Plans to create the Laboratory were born from previous research and observations conducted in the environment of the Faculty of Theology of the Nicolaus Copernicus University in Toruń and as part of many years of cooperation with legal and academic communities from all over the world. In 2019, at least 64 cases of broadly understood violations of the freedom of conscience and religion among Christians were recorded in Poland. Preliminary data from the first quarter of 2020 suggest that this year we can expect comparable or more attacks. To this should be added unreported or unmonitored cases, often present in public discourse - especially in social media. There occurs acts of labeling, humiliating, depreciating or ridiculing people who openly confess their faith.
We are concerned by the growing number of violations of the freedom of conscience and religion recorded in various areas of public life - in culture and education, in the labor market, in business relations and on the political scene. For this reason we stand up for believers, their right to freely express their beliefs (without the risk of negative consequences) and to live in line with professed values. We oppose the identification of the worldview impartiality with the secularization of the public sphere, which means eliminating any references to religion and religiosity. The worldview impartiality is guaranteed by the constitution and should be understood as a friendly attitude.
We want to counteract the exclusion of moral and religious issues from the public discourse as "confessively burdened", as well as disregarding the opinions of believers in both public and private communication. Our goal is to prevent all harmful activities directed against believers: from prejudices and stereotypes, through hate speech and similar behavior, to social ostracism, discrimination and finally physical violence.
We are convinced that education and shaping good attitudes are the best measure preventing the development of crime against the freedom of conscience and religion. We want the public sphere to be free from hatred motivated by differences in religious beliefs and worldview. Hatred is most often born of a lack of knowledge and understanding of other people. For this reason we also want to create a space for dialogue from which the true image of believers will emerge. We strive to cleanse public life of hostility towards religion, aversion and ignorance, and replace these features with mutual respect and trust. We take long-term, wide-ranging actions to make sure that the mental change we are going to initiate around us will be permanent. Perhaps - thanks to strengthening faith, respect and love - together we can change the world for the better.