Everything you need to know about the recent conversion therapy discussion

If you’re not sure what it is, conversion therapy is a despicable practice that uses emotional and physical manipulation (abuse) to try and change an individual’s gender identity or sexual orientation.

In the past week a lot of attention has come to the practice, from Instagram to celebs to renowned transphobe J.K. Rowling. Here’s a run down of everything going on.

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Conversion therapy has gained heaps of attention this last week, with Instagram banning any posts related to it, celebs signing a petition to ban it, and of course J.K. Rowling had something to say.

After blocking any ads related to conversion therapy for a few months, Instagram just announced that it will be banning any content on its platform that is related to or promotes the practice. Instagram’s EMEA public policy director explained that the company is firmly against “attacks against people based on sexual orientation or gender identity” so they are updating “policies to ban promotion of conversion therapy services.”

In the UK, multiple celebs such as Elton John, Charli XCX, and Dua Lipa are lending their voice by signing an open letter calling for a onversion therapy ban in the UK. The letter implored Liz Truss, the Minister for Women and Equalities to “end it now” and “finish what was pledged two years ago” because “until you do, torture will continue to take place on British soil.”

Meanwhile, in Australia, the only state that has officially banned conversion therapy is Victoria. Premier Dan Andrews labelled it “bigoted quackery” that “destroys lives”, explaining that “it’s not LGBTQI people who need to change. It’s our laws.

Unfortunately, other states have not followed suit, and banning conversion therapy in Australia is an ongoing conversation that still needs to be addressed.

In another realm, J.K. Rowling has continued her series of uninformed, transphobic attacks by likening hormone injections and sex-change operations to conversion therapy. She explained that she feels she is “watching a new kind of conversion therapy for young gay people, who are being set on a lifelong path of medicalisation that may result in the loss of their fertility and/or full sexual function.”

It’s incredibly important to note that Rowling is neither a doctor or a therapist, and by making comments that aren’t based on factual evidence but merely opinion, is incredibly dangerous and damaging to all, especially trans-teens that grew up finding solace in Harry Potter.

Doctors and psychologists, who actually know what they’re talking about, have replied to her tweets explaining just how wrong Rowling is. Check some out here: