Friday, April 23, 2021

Cristina Rodrigues proposes a ban on “sexual reorientation therapies”

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(dr) Cristina Rodrigues / Facebook

The non-registered deputy Cristina Rodrigues proposed this Monday the prohibition of “sexual reorientation therapies” aimed at the LGBTI + community, providing for a prison sentence of up to three years or a fine for those who promote these practices.

The deputy (ex-PAN) delivered this Monday a bill to the Assembly of the Republic in which she argues that “it is time for Portugal to take another step in strengthening the rights of LGBTI + people [Lésbicas, Gays, Bissexuais e Transgénero] with the approval of legislation that prohibits the use of ‘conversion therapies’ ”.

This initiative foresees that it will become “forbidden to practice or recommend treatments or therapies that threaten sexual orientation, the right to gender identity and gender expression and the right to protection of sexual characteristics ”.

Through an amendment to the Penal Code, Cristina Rodrigues proposes that “whoever practices or promotes, namely through the organization of an event, dissemination, provision of facilities, provision of material assistance or any other activity aimed at its realization, treatment aimed at changing the orientation person’s sexual identity or gender identity ”, either “Punished with a prison sentence of up to three years or with fine penalty“.

It is also proposed to increase the penalty if the crime is committed “jointly by two or more people“, If the victim is minor or if the offense to the severe physical integrity or death of the victim.

Citing a United Nations report last year, the non-registered MP indicates that “’conversion therapies’ or ‘sexual reorientation therapies’” are “interventions of a broad nature, which have in common the belief that sexual orientation or identity of a person’s gender can and should be changed ”and aim at“ changing people from gay, lesbian or bisexual to heterosexual and from transsexual to cisgender ”.

The non-registered deputy also mentions that these practices take place in Portugal and “in an infinite number of countries” and that “the aggressors include private and public service providers. mental health, faith-based organizations, traditional healers e state agents“And” prosecutors include family members and community members, political authorities and other agents “, with” a multitude of practices and methods, some of which are clandestine “, at stake.

Highlighting that these acts “do not have any medical justification”, Cristina Rodrigues considers that these practices “violate sexual freedom, the physical and psychological integrity and the free development of the person’s personality, which constitutes a clear violation of the Constitution of the Portuguese Republic ”.

In addition, he points out that “several countries in the world have already carried out, or are carrying out, this debate and passed legislation” with a view to prohibiting it, one of the most recent examples being New Zealand, which in February “announced that it intends to present a law to ban ‘conversion therapies’ ”.

The deputy also reports on a petition in May last year calling for a ban on these practices in Portugal.

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