Australia’s Capital City Bans Conversion Therapy

Equality Australia
Equality Australia

The Australian Capital Territory’s Legislative Assembly voted Aug. 27 to ban conversion therapy.

The legislation was based on a 2018 report by LaTrobe University which interviewed 15 survivors of conversion therapy. At least 10 organizations in Australia and New Zealand were advertising their practice of conversion therapy.

Conversion therapy survivor Chris Csabs recalled his church-based therapy in Canberra. “We are cautiously optimistic about the legislation, it’s got a lot of positive points to it. It affirms that LGBTQIA+ people are not disordered.”

The territory’s attorney general, Gordon Ramsay, is also a Christian minister.

“I have led congregations and communities of faith where people have sought refuge after being subjected to conversion therapies that have been done in the name of the church and even at times in the name of God,” Ramsay told the Assembly. “There is an insidious and clandestine manner in which these practices are carried out, mostly against children,” he said.

Born Perfect is a survivor-led program created by the National Center for Lesbian Rights (NCLR) in 2014 to end conversion therapy by passing laws across the country that protect LGBTQ children and young people, fighting in courtrooms to ensure their safety, and raising awareness about the serious harms caused by these dangerous practices.

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