THE Scottish Greens have said 2023 should be the year conversion therapy is banned in Scotland.

Conversion therapy uses interventions in an attempt to change a person’s sexual orientation, gender identity or expression.

LGBT+ groups have said the practice can cause severe trauma, but religious organisations have raised concerns that any law could impact on pastoral care.

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The Scottish Greens have sought to apply pressure ahead of the new year, with the party’s agreement with the Scottish Government that solidified the pro-independence majority in the Scottish Parliament pledging to introduce legislation by the end of 2023.

“It is a disgrace that conversion practices still continue,” said the Greens’ equalities spokeswoman Maggie Chapman.

“They are violent, abusive and have no place in a modern or progressive society.

“Nobody should be told that there is something wrong with them or that they should be ashamed of who they are, just because of their identity.

“That is why it is so vital that we introduce a watertight, comprehensive ban that stops all such conversion practices.

“When the Scottish Parliament voted to support gender recognition reform it was a small but vital change that will make a big difference for one of the most marginalised communities in our society.

She added: “In 2023 we must build on it, and take further steps to make Scotland a fairer and more inclusive society.

“In the year ahead we will be working with campaigners and the Scottish Government to introduce legislation to end conversion practices for good.”