Today, Minister responsible for the Women’s Directorate Jeanie Dendys tabled legislation to ban conversion therapy in Yukon.
Bill No. 9 would ban the practice of conversion therapy on minors or adults that have a court appointed guardian or substitute decision-maker and also clarify that conversion therapy is not an insured service. It would also introduce penalties for practicing conversion therapy in Yukon.
The Government of Yukon has been conducting broad public engagement to increase inclusiveness for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, Two-Spirit, plus (LGBTQ2S+) Yukoners in government legislation, policies, programs and services. Throughout the public engagement, Yukoners made it clear that banning conversion therapy is a top priority. The proposed ban is one of the items in the government’s LGBTQ2S+ Action Plan, currently being developed based on engagement with Yukon’s LGBTQ2S+ community.
It is vital that we ensure our territory is inclusive and free of discrimination. Yukoners have called for conversion therapy to be banned in our territory and our government is listening and taking action to prevent this harmful practice from ever happening in the territory. This is not only about protecting Yukoners today, but also protecting the generations to follow us.
Minister responsible for the Women’s Directorate Jeanie Dendys
Conversion therapy qualifies as practices, treatments or services that are provided with the intent of changing a person’s sexual orientation or gender identity.
Conversion therapy does not include a range of legitimate medical and psychological practices around coping, social support, identity exploration and development, or gender-affirming surgery and related treatments.
A guardian or substitute decision-maker is someone who has been appointed to manage an adult’s personal affairs.
The Government of Canada tabled legislation on March 8, 2020 to amend the Criminal Code in order to ban and criminalize conversion therapy.
There are no documented cases of conversion therapy being practiced in Yukon.