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European Parliament votes to condemn gay conversion therapies

The European Union Parliament voted this week to officially condemn the practice of gay “cure” therapies. These controversial practices have been overwhelmingly reported as ineffectual and damaging to those undertaking them, with links to depression and suicide. The Parliament urges its member states to ban the therapies.

Gay conversion therapies are currently only illegal in Switzerland, Taiwan, Malta, two Canadian provinces, nine US states, and the Australian state of Victoria.

The European Parliament vote was part of an amendment to an annual report on the situation of fundamental rights in the EU. The amendment states: “[The European Parliament] welcomes initiatives prohibiting LGBTI conversion therapies and banning the pathologisation of trans identities and urges all Member States to adopt similar measures that respect and uphold the right to gender identity and gender expression”.

The report also calls for “the inclusion in school curricula of education about the value of tolerance” regarding LGBT+ discrimination. It asks for “Member States to recognise change of gender and to provide access to quick, accessible and transparent legal gender recognition procedures without medical requirements such as surgery or sterilisation”.

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