Irish Govt continues work on confused ban

23, June 2023

Ireland's Equalities Minister, Roderic O'Gorman, has updated the Irish Government's Cabinet on his plans for a ban there.

Legislation will be drafted over the summer in the hope of pre-legislative scrutiny taking place in the autumn.

The Bill is intended to begin to progress through both Houses by 2024.

The Republic of Ireland previously considered a conversion therapy ban in 2018, but the legislation stalled and ran out of time after the Attorney General intervened. The Govt was advised that the Bill's wording was too unclear.

This time, O'Gorman says he hopes the legislation will be "constitutionally secure".

Ireland's constitution protects freedom of expression and belief, and guarantees the parental right to provide for the moral education of their children.

Let Us Pray's James Kennedy wrote for on the subject. He explained:

"If O’Gorman can produce a Bill that genuinely protects people’s rights, it is unlikely to please those demanding it in the first place."

"They seek a ban that includes restrictions to religious freedom and freedom of speech. They want a law that interferes with the constitutional right of parents to provide for the moral education of their children."

Flawed Research

The Equalities Minister previously commissioned research into 'conversion practices'.

He has admitted that it provided very little evidence of practices taking place in Ireland.

In fact, the narrative review looked at no cases in Ireland whatsoever. Instead it considered reports from elsewhere in the world, some of which made ludicrous claims that the ordinary work of churches is 'conversion therapy'.

In-person interviews carried out for the research heard only the testimonies of five self-professed victims.

One described their experience as “completely self-created and self-imposed conversion therapy of trying just different formulas of prayers and litanies and different devotions and things”.

Read our blog on the flawed research here.

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