On 3 November 2009 the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) ruled in favour of Soila Lautsi in the Lautsi v. Italy case. The court, an international judicial body established in 1959 under the European Convention on Human Rights, decided that the crucifix hanging in Italian classrooms violates religious and educational freedom.

Lautsi, an Italian citizen born in Finland and resident in Padua, first voiced a complaint to her children