Australia: Victorian government announces plan to ban gay conversion therapy

Victoria is set to ban gay conversion therapy, with the harmful practice being denounced by Premier Daniel Andrews as “bigoted quackery”. Mr Andrews made the announcement at the 2019 Midsumma Pride March in Melbourne, promising to become the first Australian state the criminalise gay conversion therapy.

Conversion therapy is any practice or treatment that seeks to change, suppress or eliminate an individual’s sexual orientation or gender identity. The practice has been universally condemned for the abhorrent physical and psychological impact it has on the patients. The Premier slammed the “so-called therapy” as a harmful, prejudiced and discredited practice.

“What they really are is a most personal form of torture, a cruel practice that perpetuates the idea that LGBTI people are in some way broken,” Mr Andrews said. “Some survivors, seeking genuine professional support, have instead found themselves on the other end of this bigoted quackery.”

The announcement comes after the Health Complaints Commission (HCC) investigated the practice and found that it resulted in long-term psychological harm and distress. Legislation won’t likely be introduced to parliament until next year, with the HCC recommending it be worded to clearly and unequivocally denounce conversion practices and prohibit them in law. Read more via