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Pride YMM applauds conversion therapy ban

PHOTO. Supplied: Pride YMM Facebook.

Members of the LGBTQ2+ community celebrated RMWB Council’s decision to ban conversion therapy.

Mayor and Council met on Jan. 14, 2020 and voted to pass a bylaw banning the practice in Wood Buffalo by an 8-2 margin.

In a statement, Pride YMM said the ban was a huge step to protecting and ensuring the health and safety of all LGBTQ2+ people in the region.

“This bylaw makes a clear statement that all people have the right to live, free of harassment, as their true authentic selves.”

Although disappointed it was not unanimous, the group appreciates all the councillors who supported the motion.

Pride YMM also hopes the Alberta government would resume the working group looking into banning the practice in the province.

Wood Buffalo joins Edmonton, St. Albert, Spruce Grove, and Sherwood Park as communities within Alberta that passed similar motions and resolutions.

“As Pride YMM continues to grow, we are grateful for the continued support from the RMWB. We look forward to fostering this relationship as we prepare for our 2020 Pride Festival and beyond.”

The federal government introduced Bill S-260 to the Senate on April 9, 2019.

The bill seeks to criminalize conversion therapy under the Criminal Code of Canada.

Manitoba was the first province to ban conversion therapy in 2015 and does not endorse it in its health care system.

Meanwhile, Ontario, Nova Scotia, and British Columbia each introduced legislation seeking to end its funding, to make it uninsurable, or prohibit the practice.