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Over 20,000 people sign petitions to ban ‘gay cure’ therapy in New Zealand

The two petitions received over 20,000 signatures in under a month.

By Fabio Crispim

Over 20,000 people have signed petitions to ban conversion therapy in New Zealand. 

One of the two petitions was started by Young-Labour and Young-Greens and has amassed 15,448 signatures. The second petition, created by charity InsideOUT on behalf of the LGBT community around the Rodney area, received 5,157 signatures. 

According to Radio New Zealand, the two petitions were handed over to Labour politician Marja Lubeck and the Green Party’s Jan Logie. 

Though New Zealand’s government has condemned the practice, conversion therapy remains legal in the country and can include electroshock therapy, chemical castration and exorcism. 

Max Tweedie, the co-convenor of the Young-Greens, said there was undeniable evidence that the practice was harmful. 

He said: “There has been a spotlight shone on it, hopefully, we can send a message to our young people that says if someone is trying to do this to you – it’s wrong and it’s actually illegal.” 

Speaking about the positions, Tweedie added: “We got to 20,000 in about three to four weeks. It just sends such a strong message that this type of practice has no place in Aotearoa in 2018.” 

Meanwhile, Jan Logie described gay conversion as the “ultimate form of victim blaming”, saying: “They say to people they can pray or talk or shock the gay, the trans, the lesbian away and that is just wrong. There is no need to suppress or deny our diversity.”