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Thérapies de conversion

In 2019, the television channel Arte broadcast an investigation entitled "Homotherapies, conversion forcée" (Homotherapies, forced conversions), directed by Bernard Nicolas. Practices aimed at changing a person’s sexual orientation or gender identity, most often in religious groups and called sexual reorientation therapies or conversion therapies, have thus become the focus of public attention.
In July 2019, a flash mission on practices claiming to modify sexual orientation and gender identity had been created, with Laurence Vanceunebrock-Mialon (MP of La République en Marche, centre party, for Allier) and Bastien Lachaud (MP of La France insoumise, extreme left party, for Seine-Saint-Denis) as co-rapporteurs. The mission published a communication and a synthesis in December 2019.

In March 2021, Laurence Vanceunebrock tabled a bill in the National Assembly prohibiting practices aimed at changing a person’s sexual orientation or gender identity. For her part, the Socialist Senator Marie-Pierre de la Gontrie tabled a bill in the Senate in June 2021.
The Vanceunebrock bill passed its first reading in the National Assembly on 5 October and was adopted by the Senate after intense debate. The Senate voted the proposal on Tuesday 7 December, with 305 votes in favour and 28 against. Automatic line return
The adopted law creates an offence punishable by two years imprisonment and a fine of 30,000 euros for "repeated practices, behaviour or statements aimed at modifying or repressing the sexual orientation or gender identity, real or assumed, of a person and having the effect of altering his or her physical or mental health".

A joint committee responsible for proposing a text on the provisions of the bill still under discussion was convened on 8 December 2021.
The Minister for Citizenship, Marlène Schiappa, then announced that she was entrusting Miviludes with a mission on these "conversion therapies", to "explain, exemplify and quantify the phenomenon, analysing in particular its sectarian dimension", according to a press release, and will have to formulate "operational proposals within a month to perfect the means of combating these practices". Miviludes, the body responsible for combating sectarian aberrations attached to the Ministry of the Interior, will be assisted by the assistance and intervention cell for sectarian aberrations (CAIMADES), attached to the Central Office for the Repression of Violence against Persons (ORCVP), and by the Central Office for the Fight against Environmental and Public Health Violations (OCLAESP).

A round table on conversion therapies took place in November 2021 at the EHESS ; the video recording of the debates is online.

D 16 décembre 2021    AAnne-Laure Zwilling

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