“Conversion therapies” for homosexuals: commission prepares ban

Homosexuality does not require therapy, according to Health Minister Spahn. He wants to ban therapies that seek to change people’s sexuality.

Do not need so-called "conversion": women at an LGBTQI parade in Miami Photo: ap

German Health Minister Jens Spahn (CDU) wants to ban therapies of homosexuals with the aim of changing their sexuality. As his ministry announced in Berlin on Wednesday, he has appointed an expert commission to advise on the design of the ban. "Homosexuality is not a disease and does not require therapy," Spahn explained earlier in the taz interview. That is why he is in favor of a ban on so-called conversion therapy, he said.

The commission is reportedly accompanied by the Federal Magnus Hirschfeld Foundation, which campaigns for the rights of homosexuals. Workshops are to be held in May and June with representatives from politics and science as well as participants in the controversial therapies. A final report is expected in the fall, according to the ministry. A total of 49 experts have been invited to participate, according to the ministry.

To regulate the ban legally is not so easy, said Spahn. The expert commission should develop solution approaches for this, he said. "On this basis, we will then quickly decide how and what we can implement in Germany," the minister said.

Offers of self-proclaimed "homo healers" who want to turn gays and lesbians into heterosexuals with their "therapies" have repeatedly caused discussions in the past. The ministry did not provide information about the number of these so-called "conversion therapies" in Germany.

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