An Irish politician has introduced a bill that would ban conversion therapies from the European country.
Fintan Warfield is the lawmaker in question. The senator from the Sinn Fein political party introduced the bill last Wednesday in hopes of ridding his country of the “deceptive and harmful act or practice against a person’s sexual orientation, gender identity and, or gender expression.”
If the bill were to be passed, anyone who is found guilty of trying to conduct conversion therapy on anyone else would owe 10,000 euros (about $12,351) and could possibly go to prison for up to a year.
Evelyne Paradis, the executive director of ILGA’s Europe division, spoke to the Thomson Reuters Foundation on the topic.
Paradis shared that conversion therapy can have a “negative impact on people’s mental health, as they can lead to lower self-esteem, depression and suicidal ideation.”
“Legislation sends out a powerful message that stigma masquerading as ‘therapy’ will not be tolerated by modern societies … and we encourage Irish parliamentarians to quickly pick up this really important issue,” she added.
As for Ireland, LGBTQ issues and rights are still something in flux in the country. But, they are gaining more of a spotlight thanks to the new prime Minster Leo Varadkar (who’s the first openly gay prime minister the country has had).
In addition, Ireland was the first country to legalize marriage equality through a popular ballot in 2015. Same-sex marriage came into the country thanks to 63% of the public’s approval. Now, conversion therapy will hopefully be on its way out.