The LGBT+ Community and its allies are becoming steadily more impatient awaiting a ban on conversion therapy.
The therapy is a discredited and wholly repugnant ‘treatment’ designed to change a patient’s feelings, identity and sexual orientation. It is most commonly used to remove feelings of same-sex attraction or make the patient believe they are their birth-assigned sex.
Treatment differs globally: mostly talking therapies are used, but extreme practices include electric shock therapy and religious rituals.
The practice is not medically certified and is wholly dangerous because it involves invalidating patients’ feelings; methods used promote low self-esteem, low confidence and trigger identity crisis. A first-hand account of the experience can be found in Nick White's 'How To Survive A Summer' amongst other titles.
According to the National LGBT Survey, seven per cent of LGBT+ people in the UK have been offered or undergone conversion therapy: Trans and asexual people being the most affected.
Conversion therapy has led to multiple cases of self-harm, suicide and mental health crises.
In July 2020, Boris Johnson said that the practice was ‘absolutely abhorrent’ and indicated that a ban would be put into place.
However, action still hasn’t been taken to illegalise conversion therapy and with the practice still occurring, the wellbeing of many is being put at risk.
Some regions of the USA, Canada and Australia have illegalised conversion therapy and so has Switzerland, while Germany has a ban in place for conversion therapy on young people only.
Yesterday (8th March, 2021) a debate was held in the UK Parliament to revisit the issue after a petition signed by over 250,000 people called for discussion. More importantly, since the need for a ban had already been established, the premise of the debate urged MPs to produce a timeline for the illegalisation.
The debate recognised the delay since a ban was first promised and urged swift action.
However, the outcome of the meeting remains the same: the ban will not be simple or immediate as it still requires planning and consideration with regards to what the ban will look like for the UK: frustratingly, it still looks like a work in (slow) progress..
We can only hope decisive action is taken soon.
You can help by emailing your MP. Further information can be found at https://www.banconversiontherapy.com/