Government unsure how to deal with ‘very complex issue’ of gay conversion therapy

Government unsure how to deal with ‘very complex issue’ of gay conversion therapy
News
Posted on 21 May 2020

Gay conversion therapy is a 'very complex issue' and the government has yet to decide how to proceed, according to equalities minister Kemi Badenoch.


In 2018, the Theresa May-led Tory government pledged to eradicate the practice, describing so-called ‘gay cures’ as ‘abuse of the worst kind’.

However, replying this week to a question about plans for legislation, Ms Badenoch said in a written parliamentary answer: "Conversion therapy is a very complex issue.


"There are a wide range of practices which may fall within its scope and we want to ensure we have a thorough understanding of the situation in the UK to inform an effective approach.

"Before any decision is made on proposals for ending conversion therapy, we must understand the problem, the range of options available and the impact they would have.


"We will work to deepen our understanding and consider all options for ending the practice of conversion therapy."

Speaking about the issue to the Independent, Laura Russell, director of campaigns, policy & research at LGBT charity Stonewall, said: "Any form of ‘therapy’ that attempts to change someone’s sexual orientation or gender identity is unethical and wrong.”


She continued: "The National LGBT Government survey found that two percent of LGBT people have undergone conversion therapy, and a further five percent have been offered it. We’d urge the government to remain committed to take the steps they can to end this harmful practice.”

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