ITV News reports that
… tomorrow Britain’s largest ever survey of LGBT people will reveal that thousands of people have either been through conversion therapy or been offered it.
The methods are legal, unregulated and – as we found – easily available. But I understand the government is set to announce proposals to eradicate conversion therapy as part of its LGBT Action Plan, with the details still to be decided…
Just last year it was insisting that gay conversion therapies were relatively rare, but tomorrow’s new statistics have shocked the prime minister into action.
A worshipping Christian herself, she will now have to devise a way to navigate the complex religious sensitivities involved.
But it does look as if the majority of gay Christians will get what they’ve been praying for – an end to any belief that their sexuality can be cured.
Three years ago the NHS and all the major clinical bodies in the UK signed a Memorandum of Understanding stating that conversion therapy is unethical and potentially harmful, and can cause depression, anxiety, self-harm and an increased risk of suicide.
I hope the Government has decided to do something to ban these nutcases and their quack practices, it is long, long overdue.
Our page of notes on Gay Cure and Ex-Gay
An effort to recognise gay conversion therapy as fraudulent was debated in the California state Senate on Tuesday. There was opposition from hundreds who rallied to fight the proposal because they believed it would restrict the reading of or sale of the Bible.
The Judiciary Committee passed the proposal, which means it is a step closer to being considered by the entire state Senate. An earlier version of the legislation has already passed the state Assembly.
It’s pronounced metrosexual | 18313
Not six months after Australia voted to legalise same-sex marriage, a proposal to debate gay conversion therapies at the Liberal Party’s State Council was quashed by party president, Michael Kroger. Australia has long used gay conversion therapies to control homosexuality.
New South Wales Police Commissioner Colin Delaney, claimed in 1958 that homosexuality was “Australia’s greatest menace”. Homosexuals convicted for consenting sexual acts with other adult men were segregated and medicalised within the prison system.
Sydney-based Dr Neil McConaghy used conversion therapy during the 1960s and 1970s with what Michael Kirby has described as “the most energetic attempts”. Leading LGBTIQ figures of the time including Sue Wills and John Ware protested against the dangers of this therapy, and said it was a key motivation for their activism.
McConaghy’s practices included apomorphine therapy. This involved the injection of up to 6 mg of the morphine derivative to induce severe nausea when patients were shown photographs of men. He also required patients to read pleasurable words on homosexuality aloud, after which he applied electrical shocks to them.
There is still no scientific or medical evidence which supports or validates the use of conversion therapies. Hhomosexuality was removed as a disease from the third edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders in 1987.
Selling or advertising gay conversion therapy may soon be classified as a fraudulent business practice in California under a bill passed Thursday by the state Assembly.
Conversion therapy, the practice of trying to change someone’s sexual orientation, has been shown to be ineffective, said Assemblyman Evan Low, who wrote the bill that now heads to the state Senate.
Low, who leads the Legislature’s LGBT caucus, said the therapy is harmful and those who are defrauded by people advertising or selling the therapy should have legal recourse.
“This is a very personal issue to me. This notion that we would accept as a legal practice that conversion therapy works is antithetical to my very existence in this body.”
Carl Værnet | Scanpix | 15097
Peter Tatchell has been examining Danish government archive records into the life of Dr Carl Værnet, a Danish Doctor who went on to work for the Nazis – attempting to cure gay men of their sexuality and turn them heterosexual.
Værnet operated on gay prisoners in Buchenwald concentration camp, inserting artificial hormone glands into their groins. Two of these men died from infections caused by the insanitary conditions. The Nazis were well known for their hatred of gay people and for their aim to “eliminate the perverted world of the homosexual”.
When the war was over, Værnet managed to escape to Argentina where he is understood to have continued his work on the same theme, until he died in 1965. He was never brought to justice, and his victims in Europe were denied justice. It is not currently known if there are also victims of his mad medicine in Argentina.
There is an assumption today that “liberation” of the concentration camps resulted in the release of all of the Nazi regime’s prisoners. Not so, in the case of the gay inmates. As most of them had been imprisoned for homosexual sex offences by the Courts, if they had not served the full term of the sentence of the Court, they were returned to a conventional prison until their sentences had been completed.