News by email Donate


Top Stories

Most Read

Popular Videos

World News

Conversion therapy: Top lawyer says Labour MP Bill ‘likely’ to breach freedom of religion

by Premier Journalist

A prominent human rights lawyer has expressed concerns about a Private Member’s Bill (PMBs) on conversion therapy proposed by a Labour MP, asserting that it could “constitute a serious intrusion into the legitimate activities and practices of Christian churches and religious communities”.

Jason Coppel KC also contends that the bill would “interfere with the legitimate expression of gender-critical views” in a manner that could violate the Human Rights Act 1998.

These remarks were made as the House of Commons debated Lloyd Russell-Moyle’s proposals on Friday, aimed at outlawing conversion practices related to sexual orientation and transgender identity.

While introducing the bill in Parliament, Russell-Moyle addressed concerns about freedom, conscience, and religion. He stated, “On the expression of religious belief, look, I might not like the fact that a priest or another religious figure can stand up on their religious day and say there shouldn't be LGBT people or LGBT people should convert; in my view, it's not a pleasant thing to say, but it is also not conversion practice.

"We have ensured that as long as it's not targeted to a specific individual as a course of conduct, a repeated activity towards an individual, it will never be an offence."

However, Coppel argues that while exemptions have been incorporated into the bill to safeguard the practice of religion, "the central prohibition in the Bill … remains a wide one, applying to churches and other religious organisations, and to those expressing certain views, including gender-critical views, outside those settings."

The Bill faced an impediment when it ran out of time on Friday, as the second reading debate was still ongoing when the clock reached 2.30 pm, the cut-off point for consideration of Private Member's Bill.

Labour MP Lloyd Russell-Moyle requested the debate to resume on 15th March, although further consideration appears unlikely, as it drops to the bottom of the list of PMBs.

A Monthly Gift Of $11 Makes A World Of Difference

In a world of fake news there’s never been a greater need for quality Christian journalism. Premier’s mission is to provide the Church with the most up to date and relevant news, told from a Christian perspective. But we can’t do it without you.

Unlike many websites we haven't put up a paywall — we want to keep our journalism free at the point of need and as open as we can. Premier’s news output takes a lot of time, money and hard work to produce. No one in the USA is sharing news like we are across radio, magazines and online so please help us to continue that today.

For a monthly gift of $11 or more we’d also be able to send you a free copy of the brand new Premier Bible, a wonderful Anglicised version of the NLT packed with exclusive bonus content, reading plan and resources to help you get the most out of scripture.

Your monthly support will make a world of difference. Thank you.

Support Us
Continue the conversation on our Facebook page

Related Articles

Sign up to our newsletter to stay informed with news from a Christian perspective.

News by email