In a petition launched today, members of the BC Humanist Association are calling on parliamentarians to pass a bill banning conversion therapy in Canada.
There is no credible research that indicates you can change a person’s sexual orientation or gender identity.
Rather, research does tell us that these so-called change efforts can have devastating impacts on its victims, including increased anxiety, depression, self-hatred, compromised mental health, post-traumatic stress disorder, suicide or suicidal thoughts and many other lifelong psychological and social issues.
As many as 47,000 GBT2Q men have experienced conversion therapy in Canada, despite there being a widespread consensus that these practices are cruel, unhealthy and ineffective.
Bill C-8, tabled by the government in February, would ban any "practice, treatment or service designed to change a person’s sexual orientation to heterosexual or gender identity to cisgender, or to repress or reduce non-heterosexual attraction or sexual behaviour."
Unfortunately the bill remains stuck at first reading. BCHA supporters are calling on Members of Parliament to debate and pass the bill when the House of Commons returns to regular sittings in the fall.
At that time, the BCHA says MPs should adopt crucial amendments proposed by the Centre for Gender & Sexual Health Equity to protect trans people.
Update (August 19, 2020): Parliament was prorogued on August 18, meaning that Bill C-8 will need to be reintroduced following the Throne Speech to be delivered on September 23.