According to a unanimous vote Monday, February 3, the city council has officially banned LGBT conversion therapy in Calgary. This means that the practice can no longer be used in the city. This is not the first Alberta city to initiate this ban.
The Government of Alberta website states that conversion therapy can include “treatment, counselling, or behavioural modification that aims to change someone’s sexual orientation, gender identity or expression.”
There is a “conversion therapy working group” within the province that aims to “bring together survivors, LGBTQ+ advocates and professionals to find a way to ban conversion therapy in Alberta.”
Following today's council meeting, the practice has officially been banned as the result of a unanimous vote.
The Calgary Herald has noted that the Monday meeting saw a group full of “rainbow-clad” members of the community.
When the votes were announced to pass the banning motion, the crowd apparently burst into applause.
This means that Calgary now joins Edmonton and St. Albert in the conversion therapy ban.
It is now up to city staff to draft a bylaw that will prohibit any conversion therapy from being done. Anyone who is caught practicing it will now face a fine from the city.
#Calgary city counsel just unanimously voted to move forward to pass a ban on conversion therapy. Conversion therap… https://t.co/HbSX6H9KwF— Chaz Smith (@Chaz Smith) 1580753713.0
#Calgary City counsel just unanimously voted to move the motion to ban conversion therapy up in the agenda. It will… https://t.co/MsucqqCrWf— Chaz Smith (@Chaz Smith) 1580749347.0
Along with the city ban, there is a motion to end the practice altogether within the province of Alberta, says the Calgary Herald.
Several #LGBT community members are at @cityofcalgary, waiting in a security line to get into Council Chambers. The… https://t.co/xpwPJBfO9t— Saif Kaisar (@Saif Kaisar) 1580748116.0
During the meeting, some of the councillors got emotional and shared candid personal feelings related to conversion therapy, says CBC News.
Vancouver was officially the first place in Canada to make the change and their ban came into effect one year ago.
A full house in @cityofcalgary Chambers now. Chairs, tv, and speakers have been set up just outside so every one ca… https://t.co/fTaNi87Jaz— Saif Kaisar (@Saif Kaisar) 1580748401.0
Further showing support for Vancouver's LGBT community, Justin Trudeau even made a surprise appearance at Vancouver’s pride festival last year.
While this is an exciting development in YYC, the LGBT community has experienced hardship in the city this year.
For example, the gay and trans pride sidewalks were vandalized a day before the pride festival was supposed to take place in Calgary.
With that said, rainbows filled the room at today's meeting and the community was presented with a unanimously approved decision to ban conversion therapy.