Alberta strikes working group to make recommendations to ban conversion therapy

Conversion therapy refers to any treatment to change someone’s sexual orientation or gender identity

The Alberta government has created a working group to determine the most effective way to ban conversion therapy.

Health Minister Sarah Hoffman says the practice is both damaging and hateful and she looks forward to acting on the group’s recommendations.

The committee, to be co-chaired by NDP Edmonton legislature member Nicole Goehring, will meet with stakeholders over the next five months, then draft recommendations.

Goehring has already been working on a private member’s bill to outlaw conversion therapy, which has been previously banned in Manitoba and Ontario.

Conversion therapy refers to any treatment, counselling or behaviour modification to change someone’s sexual orientation or gender identity.

The working group is to include representatives from the health and legal professions, faith leaders and the LGBTQ community.

Goehring says the recommendations need to be a broad-based effort.

“I’ve heard from Albertans and community leaders that any ban on conversion therapy must be community-driven and can’t let anyone fall through the cracks,” said Goehring in a statement Friday.

Alberta Liberal Leader David Khan accused the NDP of playing politics with the issue and said the government should ban the practice immediately.

“Alberta’s youth cannot wait another five months for an NDP committee to reach the conclusion that is obvious to most people in this province. What further input is needed to convince this government?” said Khan in a statement.

“The NDP are willing to delay any meaningful decision in a desperate attempt to turn this into an election issue. This could put vulnerable children at risk.”

Voters will go to the polls this spring in a general election, which by law can be called any time now but must be over by the end of May.

Goehring had been expected to bring forward her private member’s bill this past fall, possibly with the support of the government, but that never materialized.

United Conservative Opposition Leader Jason Kenney said at the time he couldn’t comment on legislation he hasn’t seen, but said he would keep an open mind on whether to support such a bill.

The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

WATCH: Historic night in Red Deer as 2019 Canada Winter Games kicks off

Star-studded Opening Ceremony features athletes from across Canada

Athletes’ medals unveiled at the official kick-off of 2019 Canada Winter Games

Medals depict Central Alberta landscape and pay tribute to First Nations

WATCH: Canada Winter Games are finally here

Final leg of torch relay kicked off at Fort Normandeau

Furever Ours dance coming to Botha

Tickets still left for “Furever Ours” dine and dance

Stettler Lightning prepare to battle Wranglers in playoffs this week

Stettler Lightning finish their regular season with a 14W-14L-7OTL

Fashion Fridays: Up your beauty game

Kim XO, helps to keep you looking good on Fashion Fridays on the Black Press Media Network

Ontario police field complaints over Amber Alert for missing girl, 11, found dead

Some said the Amber Alert issued late Thursday for Riya Rajkumar disrupted their sleep

LOCATED: Innisfail RCMP looking for missing woman

Amanda Kucher was last seen at the Innisfail 7-Eleven on Feb. 15

Red Deer RCMP arrest man after vehicle theft from dealership

Police were able to disable the SUV with assistance from the built-in vehicle assistance system

Red Deer College transforms into Athletes’ Village

Red Deer College’s campus will be home for the athletes during the 2019 Canada Winter Games

Alberta minor hockey team, slammed for Indigenous dance video, forfeits season

Parents say season was too dangerous to finish because the team has been threatened

Trump officially declares national emergency to build border wall

President plans to siphon billions from federal military construction and counterdrug efforts

Alix resident captures beams of light near Lacombe

Lacombe, Blackfalds, Red Deer photos have since gone viral around the world

Father to be charged with first-degree murder in Amber Alert case

11-year-old Riya Rajkumar was found dead in her father’s home in Brampton, Ontario

Most Read