"We are not to simply bandage the wounds of victims beneath the wheels of injustice,
we are to drive a spoke into the wheel itself." Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Letters and Papers from Prison (1943-1945)

Joint Statement in Support of UK Minister Morgan’s Call to end ‘Gay Cure’ Therapy

23 October 2015

The UK’s Secretary for Education, and Minister for Women and Equalities, Nicky Morgan has today called for a ban on therapeutic support from unwanted homosexual behaviours. Her speech at the Pink News Awards ceremony once again uses the hackneyed straw man ‘Gay Cure’ argument to demolish a practise that doesn’t exist except in the minds of those who have politicised homosexuality to achieve political ends.

Dr Mike Davidson | Dr Joseph Nicolosi | Mr David Pickup | Dr Carolyn Pela | Dr Christopher Rosik | Mr David Pruden | Dr Keith Vennum
not pictured: Dr Michell Cretella | Dr Phil Sutton | Mr Geoff Heath | Dr Paul Popper | Dr Daniel Harrop |

Gay Cure’ or ‘Conversion Therapy’ as the Conservative Government refers to it of course, is the invention of long-discredited approaches developed by Psychiatrists and Medical Practitioners in the UK’s esteemed Royal Colleges.  The practice was widely accepted and used throughout the British Empire and Colonies up to the late 1950s. It was essentially a behaviourist approach making use of ‘Aversion Therapy’ and chemically inducing physical aversion assisted by ‘electro-shock’ techniques. This unsuccessful treatment approach ensured that patients experienced unpleasant and lasting aversion to homosexual thoughts.  We know of no statement from any Royal College in the United Kingdom that has recognised these facts nor apologised unreservedly for such inhumane treatments under successive Conservative Governments of the period.

We support Minister Morgan’s call to end such aversion therapy ‘cure’ practices in the UK where she identifies them. We urge her also to lead the government in acknowledging its historical role in developing, promoting and exporting such abusive and discredited practices at home and in its former colonies.  

We further appeal to Minister Morgan, who self identifies as a Christian to acknowledge the rights of individuals to decide the trajectory of their sexual identity and practices to align with their primary personal and spiritual values, without coercion from government ministers.  We call on Minister Morgan to recognise the right of personal autonomy for persons to choose their sexual orientation.

Core Issues Trust will continue to invite adult citizens in the United Kingdom to be fully informed of all options when considering their response to unwanted homosexual feelings. We will also continue to advocate the use of standard psychotherapeutic and counselling talking-therapies to explore the presenting difficulties associated with homosexual experience. Our work will further continue to assist our clients in identifying trauma, reducing shame, enhancing self-esteem and assertiveness and practising healthy roles conducive to their own values, therapeutic goals and aspirations. We shall respect their personal and individual autonomy.

We will remain in close association with other groups and individuals across Europe and North America to ensure the highest professional collegial accountability and practice standards in responding to the growing requests for help and support. We deplore the untenable position that Minster Morgan’s remarks place upon UK professionals who have been forced to abandon those unwilling to normalise or affirm the homosexual inclinations they experience. 

Our services offer only one guarantee for any seeking our support: we will not abandon individuals’ rights to safe-spaces in which to explore personal issues using talking therapies in a safe, supportive environment. Neither will we coerce seekers into acceptance of sexual practices and identities that contradict their primary values.

Dr Michael Davidson
Director, Core Issues Trust

Dr Carolyn Pela
LMFT President, Alliance for Therapeutic Choice and Scientific Integrity

Dr Joseph Nicolosi
Clinical Psychologist, Chairman, Clinical Committee NARTH Institute

Dr Christopher Rosik
Clinical Psychologist and Former President, Alliance for Therapeutic Choice and Scientific Integrity

Dermot O’Callaghan
Council of Reference Core Issues Trust

Andrea Williams
Council of Reference, Core Issues Trust, CEO Christian Concern and Christian Legal Centre

Michelle A. Cretella
MD, FCP, President of the American College of Pediatricians

Dr Keith Vennum
Psychiatrist, President in waiting, Alliance for Therapeutic Choice and Scientific Integrity

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