Theresa May has “developed her view” on LGBT issues, she told ITV News, and wants to “be seen as an ally of the LGBT community here in the UK”.
Apologising for the way she has sometimes voted on gay rights in the past, the Prime Minister admitted that she was taken aback by responses to the government’s survey of LGBT people, published today.
She promised a ban on so-called gay conversion therapy, calling it an “abhorrent practice”.
As a Christian, she said that she had never prayed for someone to change their sexuality and that she was “shocked that it is still going on”.
Plans to ban ‘gay conversion therapy’
The announcement comes following a government survey that was responded to by 108,000 people.
Gay conversion therapies which try to “cure” people’s sexuality will be banned as part of the government’s LGBT action plan.
The plan is an attempt to tackle the inequalities faced by members of the LGBT community.
It comes after a large government survey assessed some of the difficulties facing LGBT people living in the UK.
Over 108,000 people responded, making it the biggest study of its kind in the world.
It highlighted how 2% of those who replied had undergone conversion therapy, with a further 5% having been offered it.
The therapy is a treatment or psychotherapy which aims to “reduce or stop same-sex attraction or to suppress a person’s gender identity based on an assumption that being lesbian, gay, bi or trans is a mental illness that can be ‘cured’,” according to equalities charity Stonewall.
Some of the most important mental health organisations in the UK have concluded that conversion therapy is unethical. In the UK, organisations including NHS England, NHS Scotland, UK Council for Psychotherapy, and the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy have all signed a Memorandum of Understanding(a fancy word for an agreement) making their position on conversion therapy clear:
“efforts to try to change or alter sexual orientation through psychological therapies are unethical and potentially harmful.”
The agreement was signed by all the organisations below.
PETITION: MAKE OFFERING GAY CONVERSION THERAPY A CRIMINAL OFFENCE IN THE UK
We are supporting the petition to make it a criminal offence to offer ‘Gay Conversion Therapy’ in the UK. Conversion therapy is a harsh psychological and sometimes physical treatment designed to change a person’s sexual orientation from homosexual or bisexual to heterosexual.