Statement on Change or Suppression (Conversion) Practices Prohibition Bill 2020

The Liberal Nationals support outlawing harmful LGBTIQ conversion practices that have no basis in medical science and can lead to long term trauma.

As the Federal Liberal Nationals said prior to the last election:

“…the use of conversion therapy has long been discredited with no scientific or medical evidence to support its use.”

The Bill before Parliament, while seeking to outlaw these practices, also raises a number of significant concerns, including:

  • the rights of children and their parents in seeking assistance with gender identity and dysphoria;

  • the legal competence of children to provide informed consent for life altering drug treatments;

  • the rights of individuals to seek assistance for gender identity and sexual orientation issues, particularly from faith leaders;

  • the boundary between the legitimate practice of faith and inducing a harmful conversion practice; and

  • the role of health care professionals in providing care and assistance.

The Liberal Nationals will move an amendment at the conclusion of the second reading debate on Thursday to pause further consideration of the Bill to enable proper consultation on these important issues over the summer recess.

Comments attributable to Shadow Attorney-General, Edward O’Donohue:

“No one in contemporary Victoria should be subjected to harmful LGBTIQ conversion practices.

“Freedom of religion is fundamental to Victoria’s vibrant, diverse and tolerant community and is central to our democracy.

“While the Liberal Nationals support the primary purpose of this Bill, we must ensure we get it right and use the summer parliamentary recess to consult with concerned stakeholders.”

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