“Conversion therapies" are not popular in France. Many young LGBTQ people have testified to having undergone "conversion therapy" in the country, but the subject does not have a lot of media coverage as in the United States.
Nevertheless, the Minister Delegate for Citizenship Marlène Schiappa said the French government wishes to ban “conversion therapies”.
Initially, this was a full-fledged bill tabled by lesbian deputy Laurence Vanceunebrock-Mialon (LREM), which had been added to the parliamentary agenda.
Now the government is working on an amendment to the separatism bill before introducing it to the National Assembly.
“The French government wants to ban these “conversion therapies”, as requested by associations for the protection of LGBT+ youth,” said the minister. “Deputies of the majority have told us of their wish to introduce it through amendments via the law we are working on: we will support them with Gérald Darmanin”.
It is quite surprising to see Darmanin associated with a pro-LGBTQ law, as he was strongly opposed to the equal marriage and adoption law a few years ago.
If the lawmakers approve the amendment, doctors will be convicted of practicing medicine illegally if they push someone to follow this kind of “cure”. They will face :
- a sentence of up to three years of imprisonment
- a fine of 45,000 euros ($)
Note that the legislation also calls schools to mention the dangers of “conversion therapies”.
While we await the decision of legislators on opening insemination to LGBTQ women, France may be about to catch up on the banning of “conversion therapies”.
In 2015, the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights called for a ban on these “unethical, unscientific, ineffective and, in some cases, torture-like practices”.
In 2018, the European Parliament called on EU member states to protect their citizens from “conversion therapies”.
Moreover, France is not alone in addressing this issue as Belgium and the Netherlands are preparing to do the same.