The Australian Psychological Society (APS) welcomes the passing of the Change or Suppression (Conversion) Practices Prohibition Bill in the Victorian Parliament.
As the peak body representing psychologists in Australia, and as a professional organisation committed to ethical, evidence-based practice, the APS strongly opposes any form of mental health practice that tries to change or suppress someone’s sexual orientation or gender identity.
A recent Health Complaints Commission (HCC) inquiry into conversion practices in Victoria found those exposed to such interventions experienced long-term psychological harm and distress, and recommended legislation be introduced to prohibit these practices.
There is clinical evidence that sexual orientation and gender identity conversion practices are harmful and can compound the challenges already faced by some LGBTQ+ people, such as negative mental health outcomes.
The APS congratulates the Victorian Government for acting decisively on these recommendations from the HCC and reiterates the calls we made in February 2019 for the other States and Territories to adopt similar measures.