Posted 40 days ago
Scotland's ruling political group, the Scottish National Party (SNP), has proposed another series of laws that aim to shore up protection for transgendered people, including a ban on conversion therapy and jail time for parents who try to block their child’s transition.
"We have grave concerns that these plans will criminalize loving parents, who could face years in jail simply for refusing to sign up to the gender ideology cult," Marion Calder, a director for the group For Women Scotland, said of the proposal.
"They will also hand activists and social workers unprecedented powers to meddle in family life while having a chilling impact on therapists and counselors," Calder added. "If SNP and Greens insist on pushing this through, it is likely to go the same way as the toxic self-identification and named person laws and be blocked in the courts."
People who try to "change or suppress" another individual’s gender identity – in the process, causing them physical or psychological harm – would face criminal charges under the new proposals put forward on Tuesday, The Daily Telegraph reported.
Such examples include preventing someone from "dressing in a way that reflects their sexual orientation or gender identity" and controlling a person’s activities. Complaints must provide proof of intent or demonstrated harm to incur punishment.
The law applies even when a person argues they have acted out of a "desire to help or protect the person."
The SNP launched a consultation period that will last until April 2: Voters and concerned parties can review the proposal and lodge complaints. The Catholic Church in Scotland has already raised concerns over a "worrying lack of clarity" in the proposals and announced it will prepare for legal action, The Guardian reported.
The advocacy group Christian Action, Research and Education (CARE) accused the bill of laying the groundwork for "subjective policing of speech."
"At CARE for Scotland, we recognize that abusive or coercive ‘practices,’ ‘treatments’ or ‘therapies’ aimed at changing a person’s identity are wrong and a source of deep hurt to those who experience them," the group wrote in a statement issued after the proposal's publication. "These things are rightly condemned, can already be reported to the police for investigation, and would already constitute a crime under existing provisions."... (Read more)