Sexuality and Gender Identity Conversion Practices Bill 2020 The Legislative Assembly for the ACT


What is the ACT Government doing?

The ACT Government has introduced legislation that deeply affects those entrusted with the care of a child or a vulnerable person.

The legislation will make it an offence to provide any counselling or therapy having the purpose of changing or suppressing an individual’s gender identity or sexual orientation.

What is a sexual re-orientation practice?

It is a practice that attempts to change a person’s sexual orientation.

If the person is homosexually orientated, then it attempts to change them to be heterosexually orientated.

If the person is heterosexually orientated, then it attempts to change them to be homosexually orientated.

Are sexual re-orientation practices taking place?

No. These practices are rare.

So, is there a need for the legislation?

No, because a person’s sexual orientation is to be respected.

What is gender transitioning?

Gender transitioning can take different forms, but there are generally four steps that can be used to change a person’s sexual gender. The person can be a child or an adult.

Step One: Social Transitioning.

Step Two: Puberty Blockers

Step Three: Cross-sex Hormones

Step Four: Surgical Procedures

Can you explain the ‘Four Steps’ and their effects?

Step One: the person uses social (as opposed to medical) steps to change their gender, e.g. asking to be called a different name, wearing different clothes, etc.  It ensures that the person is no longer referred to as ‘he’, but ‘she.’ Or is no longer referred to as ‘she,’ but ‘he.’

Step Two: hormones are taken to delay the onset of puberty, but puberty is often when feelings of gender dysphoria disappear. In addition, scientific research shows that such action damages the executive function of the brain.

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Step Three: hormones of the desired sex are taken so that the child takes on the physical characteristics of the desired sex. Long-term effects on fertility are unclear and recent research has shown no mental health benefits to patients using these hormones.

Step Four: surgical procedures remove breasts; plastic surgery on genitalia.  Recent research has shown no mental health benefits to these surgical procedures and that they may, in fact, increase the risk of mood and anxiety disorders.

If I have a simple conversation with my children, who are experiencing gender dysphoria, and counsel them to think carefully about gender transitioning, can I be charged with an offence?

Yes. You can be charged.

But if I am grandparent, guardian or teacher, surely I won’t be charged?

No. You can be charged and risk a fine of up to $24,000, 12 months imprisonment or both.

What if I am a social worker, counsellor, therapist?

Yes. You can be charged and risk a fine of up to $24,000, 12 months imprisonment or both.

So, the legislation will take away the rights and responsibilities of those who care for children and vulnerable people?

Yes. The ACT Government will be taking away your human rights.

But what about those who promote gender dysphoria to our young people in our schools and communities, will they be free to do so without it being an offence?

Yes. They will be free to promote their agenda, contrary to the wishes of the majority of the community, and especially parents.

But aren’t our children protected in so many ways because of their cognitive immaturity, lack of knowledge and life experience?

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Yes. This is a good point.

For instance, children are not allowed to get a tattoo, purchase R rated material, buy cigarettes or alcohol, sign contracts, decide not to go to school, drive a car, gamble, be interviewed by police without an adult present, enter a sexual relationship, have elective surgery without adult consent.

Why is the ACT Government contradicting our laws and customs?

We don’t know, but there will be legal and financial implications because of its action.

Catholic Archdiocese of Canberra and Goulburn
163,000 Catholics, 56 Schools, 21,000 students, 4 Hospitals, 10 Aged Care Homes.


Wordpress (20)
  • Anne Sutherland 3 years

    This is very scary legislation. What sort of protests or petitions are being organised to oppose this dangerous bill? Thanks 

    • Dees 3 years

      The more vulnerable the person, the more the confused people want to ensure they add more to their numbers.
      Teachers know this and refuse to teach the unscientific lessons in the qweer curriculum from EU. In the desire to ensure all people are told they are valued and loved, many are told that their whacky thinking is truth. The old saying of ‘love the person, if not their behaviour’ has vanished. ACL is organising responses to the interference in families promoted by this legislation.

  • Veronica Taylor 3 years

    As a practising Catholic and a legal scholar I am dismayed and angry that Catholic Voice would publish an ‘FAQ’ that contains so much information that is wrong and/or misleading. Did your writer actually *read* the draft legislation? There is nothing in the Bill that suggests that parents cannot discuss gender identity with their children. On a plain reading of the Bill ‘a simple’ conversation is not counselling or therapy and other wording in the Bill makes it fairly clear that the target is third party providers of conversion therapy. By all means disagree with the legislative intent, but please don’t allow your anonymous author(s) intentionally mislead readers.

    • Andrew Phelan 3 years

      I agree entirely, Veronica.  I too am a Catholic, and I read the legislation.  I leave it to the government to correct this misinformation.

    • AN 3 years

      This is part of the new proposed bill. It is just not being advertised broadly as the bill would receive negative attention. We Catholics must reject this nonsense and follow Church Teaching!

    • Concerned Canberran 3 years

      Yet two independent legal sources have been quoted as raising concerns as has the ACT Law Society – .

      I think I will trust the authors on this!

    • Liz Conway 3 years

      Thank you Veronica. I share your dismay. The FAQ section does not address the meaning of conversion therapy. It then lies about the legislation. The readers of Catholic Voice deserve truth.

  • Philip Pocock 3 years

    This has inevitably come about because too many, even practising Catholics refuse to denounce the practice of homosexuality, even in private at the ballot box for instance. If you refuse to get off the fence, because of some false notion of tolerance, we will all reap the whirlwind. 12 months gaol or exorbitant fines will be the least of your problems not to mention the destruction that is being foisted on the young and innocent innocent. This must be the primary basis on which you vote at the next election.

  • Ann Reynolds 3 years

    I agree scary .

  • Judith Rosewarne 3 years

    At the very least you can contact your local member and urge them to vote against this Bill.

  • Beverley Cains 3 years

    The ALP has given the ACT abortion up to birth in 2002. Now they want to do more damage to the structure of families! This is interference with the rights of parents. The Labor Party, the party of the underdog, the party of those struggling is now gone forever. Taken over by the extreme left of politics. How Ben Chiefly and Curtin must turn in their graves!

  • Martha 3 years

    This is outrageous, we need to stand against such laws that take away our basic human rights as parents or guardians. If there will be protests we will join

  • Beth Gibson 3 years

    I would urge people interested in or concerned about this Bill to read the information available on the Legislative Assembly’s website. In reading this last night, I find some of the responses in this interview to be somewhat perplexing. Perhaps the Daily Voice could invite the Ministers who presented the Bill to the Assembly to respond to this interview especially in terms of the purpose of the Bill and how at risk parents really are.

  • Barbara Samuel-Pope 3 years

    This is worse anything so far that I have read. Apart from taking away parents rights it is the worst case of child abuse. I have read of children changing their minds about who they are and what’s been done to them and sadly can’t be changed back. Leave children to be children until they at the age of reason. This is not a politicians right. Any politician with children of their own should search their souls before allowing this Bill to pass.

  • Bern 3 years


  • Peter Thygesen 3 years

    very glad to see the Diocese take a public stand on this very poor piece of legislation.

    • Pam Piccoli 3 years

      Taking the right of parenting away from us is so wrong. What are the effects of the blockers can they go back if they change their minds. A counselor can’t even advise a child even when the situation is irreversible. Having plastic surgery to disguise the child who they are.  What lasting effects will this have on a person not alone a child.  Will it cause more confusion, more depressions  or suicide.  Should this bill be approved?  Should the parents who love them and care for them have that right taken away.  We have to guide our children why are there rules for under aged citizens such as no alcohol, not allowed in casinos, a child cannot have an ppperation without a consent of their parent

  • louise zinkel 3 years

    If this legislation goes through it will be moral terrorism, simple as that!! Messing about with nature let alone the laws of God, will have dire ramifications. If our politicians can “allow”children to decide their gender, how about allowing them to drive when they “feel”like driving and vote when they “feel”like rather than waiting until they’re 16 and 18 years old? We all need to pray. Write to your politicians. Letters are very important.

  • Gisela Moller 3 years

    This is a digraceful bill. Is there anything we can do to stop this from being law?

  • Angela Barlow 3 years

    Absolute rubbish. Just file it in No. 13 and allow families to live with some hope and dignity instead of stripping those from us. Shame on politicians who can think of nothing healthy to do.