The BC Humanist Association were disappointed to see the Senate adjourn for the summer yesterday without passing Bill C-6. The bill, which only cleared the House of Commons last week, would ban conversion therapy in Canada.
Senators had approved the bill at second reading and referred it to the Standing Senate Committee on Legal and Constitutional Affairs. That Committee had not had a chance to meet prior to the Senate rising.
Should the federal government call a snap election this summer, the Bill will die on the order paper and need to be re-introduced and proceed through the entire legislative process again. A similar bill died in August 2020 when the government was prorogued.
"As Pride month comes to an end, LGBTQ2S+ Canadians are left with nothing but empty promises from a government that has failed to deliver a ban on conversion therapy for over 18 months," said BCHA Executive Director Ian Bushfield.
"We call on politicians of every stripe to end the partisan games and finally put a stop to this abhorrent practice."
Former BC Green Party leader Andrew Weaver tabled a private member's bill to ban conversion therapy in BC in 2019. The BC Government didn't support that bill and instead called on the federal government to pass a law.
The authors of Conversion Therapy in Canada: A Guide for Legislative Action wrote: "Waiting for federal legislation to be finalized and proclaimed in force can be a multi-year process and leaves residents in your province, city or community exposed and vulnerable to these dangerous and abusive practices."
"With federal action once again delayed, now is the time for provincial and local governments to step up," said Bushfield.
Today we acknowledge Bill C-6 is likely dead. While there's surely a lot of anger, pain and confusion about how this happened, we aren't slowing down.— No Conversion Canada (@NoConversionCA) June 30, 2021
Today this movement was delayed, but it was not defeated. We won't stop until we eradicate conversion practices.
Onwards. ➡️ pic.twitter.com/OG6MnRQLm9