Evangelical Alliance calls for clarity around conversion therapy ban

Apr 9, 2022 by

from Christian Today:

The Evangelical Alliance has criticised the “chaos and confusion” surrounding government plans to introduce a ban on conversion therapy.

The government has come under fire over a double U-turn on the issue in which it initially said it would consider how existing laws could be used, before backtracking just hours later to say that it would introduce a conversion therapy ban for gay and bisexual people but not transgender people.

In a letter to Prime Minister Boris Johnson, the Evangelical Alliance’s UK director, Peter Lynas, said that the U-turn had “created further uncertainty” and that “the lack of clarity helps no one”.

“Conversion therapy is an emotive topic. The lack of a clear definition adds to the confusion and often leads to those with different views talking past one another,” he said.

He welcomed the decision not to include gender identity in any new law as a “positive step” that will ensure parents, counsellors and youth workers are not criminalised if they offer help to young people, but he also urged caution.

“The risk is that the government press ahead with legislation on gay conversion therapy to be seen to be doing something,” Mr Lynas said.

“This would be despite acknowledging that the existing criminal law framework already protects against acts done in the name of conversion therapy.”

Mr Lynas pressed the Prime Minister to stick to his promise in a letter to the EA last year in which Johnson stated his commitment to freedom of speech and freedom of religion.

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