Conversion therapy law amendments approved unanimously at committee stage

Parliament's committee has approved amendments that will impose a harsher penalty for promoting or advertising conversion therapy

Legal amendments to impose a harsher penalty on the promotion or advertising of conversion therapy have been approved at committee stage in Parliament.

The Bill still needs to pass through a third reading in Parliament before it can be enacted into law.

Conversion therapy refers to any treatment, practice or sustained effort that aims to change, repress or eliminate a person’s sexual orientation, gender identity, and/or gender expression.

Parliament started debating the amendments on Monday.

Conversion therapy is already illegal in Malta according to the 2016 Affirmation of Sexual Orientation, Gender Identity and Gender Expression Bill.

But the proposed bill amends references to advertising in the 2016 Bill. Advertising will be defined as publishing, advertising, displaying, distributing, linking to or circulating any content that promotes or entices people to undergo conversion therapy.

The bill also includes penalties and jail terms for anyone who offers, performs, or refers a person to any type of conversion procedure.

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