Christian ‘gay cure’ group to hold Westminster conference against bill to ban the practice

Joseph McCormick January 15, 2014
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A group which offers gay “cure” therapy is to hold a conference on Thursday in order to protest against a bill to ban the practice.

Christian group Core Issues Trust, will hold a conference at Emmanuel Conference Centre, Marsham Street, Westminster, in support of its therapy.

The organisation claims that it helps people to “change unwanted same-sex feelings”.

A bill in Parliament seeks to ban the practice of the therapy, and will do so under the wider regulation of the psychotherapeutic industry which is currently unregulated.

Labour MP Geraint Davies put forward the bill, and he will address the Core Issues Trust event.

If passed into law, the Counsellors and Psychotherapists (Regulation) Bill would require all therapists to register with a government-approved body.

Speaking to the IBTimes, he said: “People who may be feeling confused about their feelings may find themselves in the hands of someone with an agenda of imposing their worldview. I do not think a national and paid-for service should be in the business of imposing an alien sexual orientation. It’s in conflict with the patient’s rights.”

The practice of “gay cure” or “gay conversion” therapy is widely condemned by medical and psychology professionals.

Dr Lyndsey Moon of the British Psychological Society said: “The evidence says that conversion therapies are not acceptable and they are likely to lead to more problems, such as depression, anxiety and confusion.

“That’s not acceptable. People do not need to be cured and are not any way pathological.”

She went on to question why the BPS had not been invited to speak at the event.

Defending the programme, a Core Issues Trust spokesperson said: “It’s not conversion therapy. It’s about assisting people to change from unwanted sexual attraction if they want to have this therapy.”

Mr Davies’ bill will receive its second reading on 24 January.

Prior to formal publication of the bill, it received cross-party support from Labour, Conservative, Liberal Democrat and Plaid Cymru MPs.  

In April 2012, Core Issues Trust tried unsuccessfully to advertise anti-gay posters on 24 London buses in a direct response to Stonewall’s pro-gay posters.

The case is currently being heard by the Court of Appeals.

More: conference, core issues trust, event, Geraint Davies, therapy, Westminster

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