The House of Commons’ official Twitter has come under fire for publishing a tweet asking why conversion therapy should be made illegal, angering many in the LGBT+ community.
Posted only 3 days after the official Pride Month, a time of celebration and continued protest for those in the LGBT+ community on their hard fought struggle in obtaining equal rights, the House of Common’s asked on Twitter “Should it be made illegal? What would that mean to you?” and for people to share their insights via a Smart Survey petition link.
Many on Twitter we quick to call out the ignorance of the tweet, many citing that conversion therapy is effectively a form of torture which should not be legal in any country under international laws, and others discussing how putting the survey to the general public could make it an easy target for anti-LGBT+ platforms and haters to abuse in order to ensure the method stays legal.
Some stood up for the Commons’ survey due to the fact that before anything can be banned in the UK, it has to go forward to Parliament.
The fight by the community to get conversion therapy banned in the UK has been an ongoing struggle, but it was reignited this year after a petition via the official UK Government & Parliament Petitions site posted by Mahed Asad, called on the government to ban it in the UK.
“Despite all major counselling and psychotherapy bodies in the UK, including the NHS, condemning LGBT conversion therapy, it is still legal and LGBT individuals in the UK are still exposed to this psychological and emotional abuse to this day. The very thought of this sickens me, and I would like to see it stopped one day.”
The Government responded to the petition, which has garnered more than 185,029 signatures since it began. The official response stated that the government was ‘committed’ to dealing with a problem that made citizens feel unsafe and wanted to protect them from harm. They further discussed in their statement ‘corrective rape’; a method commonly used in conversion therapy to turn gay women and men straight and how the government would act against such areas of conversion therapy that should already be illegal under current laws on rape. However, the Government insisted it would continue to support efforts to ensure LGBT+ people had access to spiritual faith leaders, and would do nothing to prevent that.
“The UK Government is committed to ensuring all citizens feel safe and are protected from harm. This is why we will work to deepen our understanding and consider all options for ending the practice of conversion therapy.”
Government Equalities Office
The petition posted on the House of Commons’ official Twitter comes only a day after Boris Johnson denied accusations of virtue signaling via specific gestures and many have begun to speculate that this action is simply another effort of the Government to back Johnson in providing supportive gestures to marginalised and ignored groups.