Today’s announcement from NSW Opposition Leader Chris Minns that he would ban conversion practices if elected will be met with concern from parents with children experiencing unwanted gender dysphoria.
The Australian Christian Lobby (ACL) NSW Director, Rob Norman, “If NSW Labor intend following a Victorian model of conversion therapy bans which remove parental rights to seek assistance for their children and criminalise medical practitioners for consulting according to best practice, then they can expect strong pushback.
“The ACL is opposed to all coercive conversion practices. There is no evidence of this happening in NSW. Our concern is that the real objective of the Labor party is to outlaw consensual counselling, prayer and parental conversations and to make it unlawful to resist promotion of transitioning to a transgender identity, even for children.
“Prior to the election NSW voters are seeking assurance from Mr Minns and Premier Perrottet that parents will remain free to talk to their children about issues of gender and sexuality without fear of criminal sanction, and medical practitioners will be allowed to consult according to their patient’s best interests.
“The Victorian so-called conversion therapy prohibition is terrible public policy, as it harms the very ones it purports to protect.
“Additionally, as NSW has no laws preventing religious discrimination, any introduction of Victorian-style conversion therapy laws would lead to a disproportionate removal of freedom of speech and freedom of religion.”
The Australian Christian Lobby urges the government to include on its planned joint working group stakeholders from faith-based groups as well as parents of children who are currently being treated compassionately with the global best practice of watchful waiting.