The British government announced today that it was abandoning its intention to ban so-called “alternative therapies” for sexual orientation or gender identity.
Citing government sources, the BBC writes that, instead, the British executive decided to “review the existing law to make it more effective”.
In 2018, then-Prime Minister Theresa May pledged to end sexual rehabilitation treatments as part of a new action plan for a more inclusive community with the LGBTQI + community.
Incumbent President Boris Johnson wanted to keep that promise, saying the treatments were “absolutely disgusting” and declared a criminal offense last October for using those treatments without permission for minors and adults.
The retreat announced today has drawn criticism from various political quarters and the LGBTQI + community.
Of the 108,100 LGBTQI + individuals surveyed in 2018, 5% had access to alternative therapies and 2% had tried, according to a study released by the UK government in 2018.
Health officials define alternative therapies as practices or suggestions that seek to change a person’s gender identity or sexual orientation.
Three countries, France, Israel and New Zealand, have already enacted legislation this year banning those practices.
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