Psychologists ban LGBTIQ+ conversion therapy practices in Albania

Albania’s peak body for psychologists has ruled out future practice of LGBTIQ+ conversion therapy in the European nation, effectively banning harmful attempts to change a person’s sexuality or gender expression.

The Order of Psychologists, which all practicing therapists must join to work in the country, has moved to forbid practitioners from carrying out attempts to change the way LGBTIQ+ people express or identify their gender or sexuality.

Albanian LGBTIQ+ advocacy organisation Pink Embassy has shared their support for the decision in a media statement.

“[This decision] places the Order of Psychologists in Albania in the forefront of the institutions respecting LGBTI rights,” the statement reads.

Pink Embassy adds that the ban is “significantly important for LGBTI adolescents, whose parents often force them to undergo conversion therapy, in the hope of changing their sexual orientation or gender identity.”

Albania joins Brazil, Ecuador, Spain and Malta in outlawing the practices, as well as numerous states of the US and Canada, while Germany most recently banned conversion therapies for people under the age of 18. Here in Australia, the ACT and Victoria are working towards banning conversion therapies.

On a national level, a joint statement signed by survivors of conversion attempts and LGBTIQ+ advocates, is urging the federal government to intervene in these practices, ban future conversion therapies and provide support to those who have been forced to endure conversion therapies.

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