Overcast

Overcast

max temp: 18°C

min temp: 14°C

ESTD 1874 Search

Suffolk MP warns of “unintended consequences” of gay-to-straight conversion therapy ban

15:25 14 January 2014

Dr Dan Poulter, MP for Central Suffolk and North Ipswich

Dr Dan Poulter, MP for Central Suffolk and North Ipswich

Archant

Banning gay-to-straight conversion therapy could have “unintended consequences” on people coming to terms with their sexuality, a health minister has said.

Dr Dan Poulter said he found the so-called gay cures “absolutely abhorrent” in principle, as Labour’s Geraint Davies, MP for Swansea West, urged him to ban them.

But Dr Poulter said regulations or a ban on the therapy, which seeks to turn gay people straight, could stop counsellors from providing the “important service” of supporting people coming to terms with their sexual orientation.

The minister told Mr Davies: “On the point specifically... of the principle of what you say about a gay-to-straight aversion therapy, I also find that absolutely - in principle - abhorrent.

“But the issue is... if we were potentially to ban or put regulations in about that it may have unintended consequences.

“We may affect counsellors and stop counsellors from practising through supporting people coming to terms with their sexuality and that important service is delivered and one that I hope on both sides of this House we can support.”

Mr Davies had asked Dr Poulter during health questions: “You know that under this Government the number of people referred to psychotherapists and counsellors has tripled to a million at a cost of £400 million and some of these are faced with so-called gay-to-straight conversion therapy.

“When will you support my Bill to regulate psychotherapists and ban so-called gay cures, which cause enormous trauma amongst its victims and being promoted this Thursday at a big conference in Westminster?”

Mr Davies presented his Counsellors and Psychotherapists (Regulation) Bill as a private member’s bill last October. It is due to have a second reading next month.

On the issue of therapist spending, Dr Poulter replied to Mr Davies: “The reason, I’m sure you’re aware, there has been increased referrals to therapists is because this Government is investing in early intervention and ensuring that we make sure that we invest in the Iapt (Improving Access to Psychological Therapies) programme so we can get to people with mental health problems much earlier and give them better support before they reach the point of crisis.”

0 comments

The Freeport Braintree retail complex

A multi-million pound proposal has been put forward to expand a mid-Essex shopping centre creating up to 100 new jobs.

Part of the illegal shipment of cigarettes discovered at the Port of Felixstowe by Border Force officials.

Border Force officers have foiled the biggest ever attempt to smuggle cigarettes into the UK after uncovering more than 11million cigarettes at the Port of Felixstowe.

Flossie the bunny, who got separated from its owner at Stansted Airport

Staff at Stansted Airport have taken to social media in an attempt to reunite a lost toy bunny with its owner.

Earl Soham. Credit: Mike Page.

Owners of an east Suffolk business centre are looking to convert some of its older buildings into residential use – while finding new sites for those being displaced.

Officers have issued a photograph of a man they would like to speak to following an alleged assault, which took place in woodland in Bentley last month. Pic: Suffolk Constabulary.

A man in his 70s was assaulted by a group of men riding trail bikes in an area of woodland in Suffolk.

West Suffolk MP Matthew Hancock, minister of state responsible for digital policy, gave a talk on broadcasting at the Radio Academy’s Radio Festival at the British Library in London. Pic: Matthew Hancock.

A Suffolk MP delivered a masterclass in public speaking today by refusing to be distracted by a bizarre distraction at a radio industry conference.

Most read

Great Days Out

cover

Click here to view
the Great Days Out
supplement

View

Most commented

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Streetlife

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to the following newsletters:

MyDate24 MyPhotos24