Britain will work to ban conversion therapy and provide more support to members of the LGBTQ community who have undergone the treatment, as part of its post-pandemic government agenda.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s government said steps would be brought forward to prevent these “heinous practices that can cause mental and physical harm”, starting with a consultation on how best to protect people and eliminate coercive practices .
Johnson’s party has come under increasing pressure on the issue after former leader Theresa May pledged in 2018 to root out a process that seeks to change or remove a person’s sexual orientation or gender identity. .
However, some religious leaders had argued that a broad ban could involve those who offer pastoral support, including prayer.
Presenting the new parliamentary agenda in a backgrounder alongside the Queen’s Speech, the government said: “We will ensure that medical professionals, religious leaders, teachers and parents can continue to have conversations open and honest with people. “
A 2017 national LGBTQ survey found that 5% of those who responded said they had received a prescription and 2% said they had undergone conversion therapy. In more than half of the cases, the therapy was offered or led by faith-based organizations.
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