The British Hindu Council and the Buddhist Dhamma Center have called for an “immediate” ban on conversion therapy in the UK.
Hindu Council UK is a charitable organization which represents various faiths and serves as an “effective voice on political issues” for British Hindus.
In a statement released Monday, June 16, the Hindu Council UK called on Boris Johnson and the UK government to “immediately” ban conversion therapy.
The charity said: “The Hindu Council UK asserts that any practice that seeks to change, heal, nullify or suppress a person’s sexuality, gender identity (commonly referred to as ‘conversion therapy’) does has no place in society, is unethical and harmful, and is unsupported by evidence.
Using Hindu beliefs to explain his position, he continued, “Brahma created both man and woman as equals in the golden egg of the cosmic womb (Hiranyagarbha) at the beginning of Creation and in moreover, the Rishis of the Rig Veda recognized the existence of a tertiary nature (Prakriti).
Hindu philosophy recognizes the existence of the third genus, known as “tritiya-prakriti” or “tertiary nature”. This concept encompasses many different types of trans people and of diverse genders.
The statement continued, “The Vedic Rishis also revealed the law of Karma which allows complete freedom, free choice, to live a life of dignity, in accordance with the ten principles of Dharma.
“We therefore call on the government to ban so-called ‘conversion therapy’ as a degrading and harmful practice without delay.”
On Friday, June 18, the Buddhist charity Dhamma Center also released a statement calling for a ban on conversion therapy.
In a letter to the directors of the Ozanne Foundation, seen by RoseNews, he said: “We believe that all people, regardless of their sexuality or gender identity, are precious and valued beings and are a precious part of the Universe.”
Like the Hindu Council UK, the Buddhist organization has confirmed that conversion therapy “has no place in the modern world” and called for an immediate ban by the British government.
A ban on conversion therapy in the UK was upheld in the Queen’s Speech when the state opened Parliament on May 11, but the government’s Equality Office said the legislation would not would be put forward only following a public consultation process that “would ensure that the ban can remedy the practice protecting the medical profession; defend freedom of expression; and respect for religious freedom ”.
Despite the government’s insistence on “defending religious freedom,” several faith communities have called for an immediate ban.
Earlier this month, the Bishop of Manchester backed lawsuits against religious leaders providing conversion therapy, including prayer, and suggested the consultation was an excuse for “dragging your feet.”
He said that every day the consultation on conversion therapy continues, “young people continue to suffer abuse disguised as therapy,” and added, “Their harm is real and immediate. For their sake, we must make this consultation both short and to the point. “