The Majority of British Public Agree That There Should be a Ban on Conversion Therapy, Independent or Not of Whether They are Religious.
A You Gov survey commissioned by the Ozanne Foundation has found that nearly two thirds (62%) of British respondents agree there should be a ban on conversion therapy. Only 14% believe there should not be a ban.
The survey, conducted amongst 1671 adults living in Great Britain, asked people whether or not they thought conversion therapy should be banned, defining conversion therapy as “where people seek to change someone’s sexual orientation, sexual behaviour or gender identity”. The results showed that the majority wanted a ban, with those with no religious affiliation being significantly more likely to believe there should be a ban (68%) than those with a religious affiliation (57%).
What is clear is that few respondents believe there should not be a ban, with only 16% of Christians agreeing there should not be a ban and 15% of those with any form of religious affiliation.
The survey also found that just under a quarter of respondents (24%) “did not know” whether there should be a ban or not. This was significantly higher amongst those with a religious affiliation (28%) to those with no religious affiliation (20%).
In July 2017 the Church of England called on the government to ban conversion therapy following a debate led by the Jayne Ozanne, Director of the Ozanne Foundation, which noted how harmful it was. Commenting on the results she said:
“These results show that the majority of the British people, including those who are religious, agree that “conversion therapy” should be banned. We know that this is currently still being practiced by religious groups across the UK and we urgently ask the government to act in order to safeguard young people’s lives. A ban will ensure a clear signal is given that this abhorrent practice will not be tolerated in the UK.”
Speaking about the need for a ban, the Bishop of Liverpool, Rt Revd Paul Bayes said:
“These results are very clear. Only a small minority of people believe that there should not be a ban. The Church of England’s Synod voted in 2017 that there should indeed be a ban, and it is now two years since the government itself made a commitment to act in this matter. For as long as there is delay, people will continue to be vulnerable to this form of oppression. It really has to stop.”
All figures, unless otherwise stated, are from YouGov Plc. Total sample size was 1,671 adults. Fieldwork was undertaken between 14th – 15th July 2020. The survey was carried out online. The figures have been weighted and are representative of all GB adults (aged 18+).