The Australian Christian Lobby has a new target – the Victorian government’s proposed law against conversion practices that seek to change a person’s sexual orientation or gender identity. The Lobby has termed the Change And Suppression (Conversion) Prohibition Bill, introduced last month in the Victorian Parliament, as the “most dangerous and draconian bill we have ever seen in Australia” and claims that the legislation “could land anyone in jail for failing to toe the line on LGBTQ issues.” The Bill in reality does no such thing and instead acts against harmful and unscientific conversion practices. ACL managing director, Martyn Iles in a press statement remarked that the Bill would “make the Soviets blush” and goes on to incredulously claim that such “practices are not happening in Australia as already noted by other state governments.” “The Bill digs up relics of the past as an excuse to ban innocent practices like the teaching of scripture, friends praying for each other, and parents affirming their kids’ biology, to name a few. The Bill lies about the existence of LGBT people who want to embrace their faith and live according to the standards of their faith. The Bill guarantees they cannot seek voluntary pastoral support, pretending these Australians do not exist,” said Iles. The Lobby alleged that parents were at risk of being named offenders under the family violence laws and has asked people to defend their “religious freedom and parental rights” by writing to their MPs to vote against the Bill, when it is taken up in Parliament early next year. LGBTQI organisations and survivor groups had welcomed the Bill as a “world leading legislation.”

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