Ban Conversion Therapy petition gains overwhelming support

By Te Ao - Māori News

The petition calling for the ban on conversion therapy in Aotearoa has amassed more than 120,000 signatures in just three days.

The petition was launched by the Green Party at the Big Gay Out in Auckland on Sunday, 14 February. The very day the country slipped back into Covid-19 alert levels 2 and 3.

The Greens aim to reach 140,000 signatures before they take the petition to the House of Representatives.

Green Party MP Dr Elizabeth Kerekere, who created the submission, says conversion therapy is a form of torture and is urging the government to uphold its pre-election promise to ban it.

"I will keep pushing it until it happens," she said.

"They longer they take to respond to it, the more I believe that people in our country will clamor after them."

In Dr Kerekere's petition she says conversion therapy includes a series of practices used in an attempt to change someone’s sexual orientation or gender identity through shaming, emotional manipulation and in extreme cases physical trauma.

Dr Kerekere believes the therapy practice is not only unethical, but it is linked to serious long term mental health issues.