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Lush calls on MPs to ban conversion therapy with no exemptions

Tom Shearsmith
13 February 2023

Lush is working with Galop, the UK’s leading LGBT+ anti-abuse charity, to call on MPs to introduce comprehensive legislation to fully protect LGBT+ people from conversion therapy - with no exemptions.

The government first promised a ban on ‘conversion therapy’ back in 2018, but successive governments have failed to bring this legislation before parliament. Lush and Galop are calling on the public to help them end this abusive practice, once and for all.

Rishi Sunak’s government has said they will table a legislative ban on ‘conversion therapy’, with the aim of passing it before the next general election. Lush believe that the ban must cover protection for trans people, people over the age of 18, and people who are said to have ‘consented’ to conversion practices – as you cannot consent to abuse.

From the 10-16 February, Lush stores across the UK will feature windows bringing attention to the need to protect people from the practice. Customers can scan a QR code to send a Valentine’s E-card to their MP to "have a heart and ban conversion therapy".

During this time customers can buy a limited edition heart-shaped ‘washcard’ with the words “Proud to love you”. All of the money from the sales of this product will be donated to Galop.

The washcard, priced at £3, is made from apple pulp and designed to give a rich lather and perfumed skin.

Galop is the UK’s LGBT+ anti-abuse charity. Galop works directly with thousands of LGBT+ people who have experienced abuse and violence every year. The charity specialises in supporting victims and survivors of domestic abuse, sexual violence, hate crime, and other forms of abuse including so-called conversion therapies.

So-called ‘conversion therapy’, or conversion practices, mean any group of actions which try to change or suppress someone’s sexual orientation or gender identity. This may be committed by family members, community members or groups, religious leaders or organisations, health workers, therapists, or other practitioners within the ‘well-being sector’.

These practices are still legal in the UK, and Galop’s research with YouGov has found that almost 1 in 5 LGBT+ people in the UK have been subjected to conversion practices. Additionally, between April 2021 and December 2022, Galop’s LGBT+ Young People’s Advocacy Service recorded that 24% of current service users were currently experiencing, or had previously experienced, conversion practices.

Jonnie Hatfield, Lush PR & LGBTQIA+ Community Network Member, commented: “This campaign truly comes from the heart of Lush. With many of our staff identifying as LGBT+, bringing an end to so-called ‘conversion therapy’ is a cause we are passionate about.

“Working with the LGBT+ anti-abuse charity Galop gave us the perfect opportunity to bring this issue to the public’s attention and call on the government to have a heart and enact vital legislation to protect LGBT+ people across the UK from abuse.”

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