Public consultation begins on Conversion Practices Bill


The Rockliff Liberal Government wants Tasmania to be a place where everyone feels valued, included, encouraged and supported to be the best they can be, and this includes providing a safe and inclusive community for LGBTIQA+ people.

We are committed to making decisions on the basis of expert advice and best practice with priority focus on the physical and mental health and wellbeing of all Tasmanians.

The Justice Miscellaneous (Conversion Practices) Bill 2024 makes amendments to the Health Complaints Act 1995 and the Police Offences Act 1935 to give effect to the Government’s commitment to ban conversion practices in Tasmania.

A ‘conversion practice’, as defined in the Bill, is a practice that attempts to change or eradicate the sexual orientation or gender identity of another person.

However, the Bill contains several important exclusions. For example, practices by health service providers that are clinically appropriate and/or in compliance with professional obligations, as well as more general actions such as providing support or understanding to another person, are not conversion practices for the purposes of this Bill.

Given the evidence available nationally and internationally, the legislation will not restrict supportive care, guidance, or mentoring of a child by a parent or guardian.

Conversion practices are distinct from support that may be provided to a person by health professionals, family and friends, or in religious or spiritual settings.

As outlined, the Bill specifically provides that expression of a belief or opinion alone is not a conversion practice.

The Tasmania Government supports freedom of religion and the right for all people to express their personal faith, beliefs, and values, including for the purposes of making contributions to public policy debates.

This reform is not intended to limit people’s ability to have open discussions as part of policy debates, and within families, faith communities and clinical settings.

The Bill also contains amendments to the Health Complaints Act 1995 to provide a pathway to make complaints about conversion practices provided under the guise of health services.

The Government believes it is vitally important to get this important legislation right, and in order to do that we need to give Tasmanians an opportunity to participate in consultation on the draft legislation.

Public consultation on the draft Bill starts today and closes on February 16, with the draft Bill available on the Department of Justice’s website

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