ROME – A bill has been introduced in the Italian parliament which would require the visible display of crucifixes in public buildings, Italian news magazine L’Espresso reported Monday.
The bill, “Dispositions concerning the display of the crucifix in schools and in offices of public administration,” proposes crucifixes be visibly hung in places such as schools, universities, prisons, public offices, consulates, embassies, and ports.
The proposal would also order a fine of up to $1,169 for non-compliance. The bill now waits to be scheduled for discussion in the Chamber and Senate.
It was introduced by the country’s Lega Nord party, headed by Matteo Salvini, the newly-made interior minister and deputy prime minister alongside the leader of the Five Star Movement, Luigi di Maio.
Italy’s general election, held in May, resulted in a coalition government led by Lega Nord and the Five Star Movement, both of which are center-right populist parties.
A similar decision was made by the government of Bavaria, a German state.
Bavarian premier Markus Söder announced April 24 that the entrances to state buildings would be required to display a cross by June 1. Söder’s office said the decision was meant to “express the historical and cultural character of Bavaria” and to present “a visible commitment to the core values of the legal and social order in Bavaria and Germany.”