Minister defends Germany’s limited gay therapy ban

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05/07/2020

Germany’s ban on so-called gay conversion therapies needs to be robust enough to withstand court challenges, Health Minister Jens Spahn said in response to criticism that his proposed law would not protect young adults. The Bundestag is expected later on Thursday to pass a law that will ban the therapies, which purport to turn gay people straight, but which critics say perpetuate the harmful myth that being gay is a disease. But the Greens, who in 2013 were the first to call for a ban, say the conservative-Social Democrat coalition’s proposal falls short since it protects only minors from the practice, even though those aged between 18 and 26 can also be exposed to harmful social pressures. Spahn, the conservative health minister, said ahead of the vote that he wanted a law that could easily withstand legal challenge.

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