UK Government Set To Ban LGBTQ+ Conversion Therapy

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By Shwan Haddad

 

The UK Government have pledged to ban ‘Gay conversion therapy’, through the Queen’s speech reopening the UK Parliament.

This comes after years of the government being heavily criticised for not doing so previously.

The United Nations have urged the UK Government to ban it as it is ‘pseudoscientific’.

Conservatives have been pledging to ban it since 2018, when Theresa May brought the issue to light.

Now the issue has been brought to the public and we are being asked on whether or not it should be allowed.

Public referendum?

Prime Minister Boris Johnson wants to consult the public on the matter of Gay conversion therapy.

Many took to Twitter to voice their concerns about the situation.

Twitter is ablaze with people asking questions about why this is even being left to the public.

This twitter user said:

https://twitter.com/_polmckinley/status/1392036168024403969

Others argue about the fact that this ban should have been enacted years ago.

They say this due to former PM Theresa May pledging this back in 2018.

Monty Montcrieff, Podcaster and CEO at London Friend said this on the matter:

Julian Phatarfod, a principle transport planner at WSP (an engineering company) had this to say on the matter:

Many are arguing that this move to consult the public is a dangerous one as this may not go over well.

This twitter user said:

https://twitter.com/PhilButEgg/status/1392052817410527238

Religious Freedoms?

There are those who argue that there is a religious freedom angle to this.

The Evangelical Alliance, which represents 3,500 Churches in the UK, says the ban could restrict religious freedom.

They argued that an expanded definition of conversion therapy could jeopardise church leaders, putting them at risk of prosecution.

This has brought on backlash by supporters of the ban, arguing that this isn’t a matter of religion, but human rights.

https://twitter.com/NIGGraha/status/1392034159141457920

Another twitter user commented:

https://twitter.com/AshleyWCGreen/status/1392033116311728128

Others have argued that exemptions, should there be any in this ban, do not make it a ban:

Religious factions have been calling for exemptions due many reason.

This is due to their core beliefs such as chastity until marriage.

Peter Lynas, UK director of the Evangelical alliance says that extreme practices should already be banned by existing laws.

But he also argues that a broadening definition would put church leaders at risk.

He is quotes as saying:

“This will threaten the everyday practices of churches, church leaders, and Christians across the UK. It would place ministry leaders at risk of arrest for encouraging young people to maintain chastity until marriage. And it would criminalise a member of a church who prays with another member when they ask for prayer to resist temptation as they are attracted to someone of the same sex but do not wish to act on it”.

How bad is the situation in the UK?

According to a UK Government Survey of 108,000 people, 5% were given the option to take conversion therapy.

The very same study also found around 2% of people had actually undergone ‘therapy’.

In most cases, this is administered by religious organisations.

Though one in five did say they received ‘therapy from an actual healthcare professional as well.

People who have undergone it have said that they felt as if it had terrible effects on them.

They say they feel, desexualised, empty, and worried about always being in the wrong.

Others feel harmed severely by the process afterwards.

A UK Study in 2019 found that gay conversion therapy could be linked to suicidal ideation.

The study found that two thirds suffered from suicidal thoughts and one fifth had attempted suicide.

So What Now?

The UK is one of the world’s leading countries of LGBTQ+ rights.

A full ban of conversion therapy would only further prove this.

Many in the public view this as an issue that should be taken care of anyway, so we are seeing a step in the right direction.

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