Not a single effective sanction for carrying out conversion therapies in Spain

Conversion therapies Not a single effective sanction for carrying out conversion therapies in Spain

Seven regional laws and one state law prohibit conversion therapies in Spain, but there has not yet been a single sanction

Madrid It was the first autonomous community to prohibit and sanction bad calls «conversion therapies through regional LGTBI law. It was in 2016 and, little by little, other regions followed in their footsteps: Andalusia, Aragon, Canary Islands, Cantabria, Castilla-La Mancha, Comunitat Valenciana and La Rioja. Furthermore, in 2023 the state trans and LGTBI law, which prohibits and sanctions them throughout Spanish territory. Despite the multiple regulations, in all these years there has been no effective sanction.

Seven regional laws and one state law that prohibit and they sanction the «conversion therapies, that is to say, "all those practices aimed at modifying or canceling a person's sexual orientation, identity or gender expression". The ONU He described them as “humiliating, degrading and discriminatory practices".

state law

In its article 17, the trans law and LGTBI state, approved in February 2023, establishes the following: “The practice of aversion, conversion or counterconditioning methods, programs and therapies, in any form, aimed at modifying the sexual orientation or identity or gender expression of people is prohibited, even if they have the consent of the interested person or of your legal representative".

It describes it as a very serious infraction, so the sanction included in that same rule stipulates a fine from 10.001 to 150.000 euros and accessory measures such as the cessation of economic or professional activity or the prohibition of accessing any type of public aid for a maximum of three years.

Lawyer saul castro remember to Newtal that "'Conversion therapies', beyond regional legislation, are prohibited in Spain through this state law”. However, he points out that the regional governments usually contemplate “more behaviors", that is, they expand what is established in the state-level standard.

Criminalize conversion therapies

Conversion therapies
Conversion therapies

One of the objectives of the association It's not therapy consists of bringing "conversion therapies" to the Criminal Code. That is, criminalize them. According to Castro, “sanctions are neither effective nor dissuasive”. "A prison sentence changes things. Even if you do not go to prison, you already have a criminal record, and, in addition, it provides greater protection to the victims, since through criminal proceedings they can be privately accused and testify in a protected manner against their perpetrators.”, points out this lawyer.

The criminal lawyer speaks along the same lines Ana Cal, who points to that "There is great difficulty in prosecuting conversion therapies, partly because they are practiced clandestinely and the majority of victims are afraid to report them.”. But "It is also because it is not classified as a crime".

A sanction canceled

So far, only one person has been sanctioned in Spain for carrying out "conversion therapies", but finally the financial fine imposed was annulled. The coach in question, Elena Lorenzo, was denounced shortly after Madrid the LGTBI law was approved in 2016. The Community went so far as to sanction the accused with a fine of $20.001 for carrying out "conversion therapies", but appealed to the Superior Court of Justice (TSJ) of Madrid. This body decided to annul the sanction not because it did not consider that the facts for which it had been sanctioned did not constitute an infraction, but because it considered that the administration had committed fraud by having delayed the process, as stated in the ruling.

Conversion therapies


Sources: newtral

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