Activist group GetUp has called on Liberal MP Kevin Andrews to condemn gay ‘conversion therapy’, refusing to retract their statement that he has allegedly supported the practice until he does.
In the lead up to the federal election, GetUp’s conversation guides for supporters advise them to tell voters that Andrews allegedly “advocated for discredited, damaging and cruel gay conversion therapy”, according to The Australian.
“If Kevin Andrews wishes to now correct the public record and offer his public opposition to the damaging practice of gay conversion therapy, we will happily amend our script to voters in his electorate,” said a spokesperson for GetUp.
“We will instead reference his long history of outdated and damaging views on the LGBTQI community.’’
Andrews has a history of poor support for the LGBTI community, including abstaining from voting on same-sex marriage after years of speaking out against it.
He last year convened an anti–Safe Schools meeting in Hobart, where young people spoke of their experiences struggling with discrimination and attempting to change their sexuality.
Harmful conversion therapy for LGBTI people still exists in Australia and New Zealand, with a report last year identifying at least 10 organisations promoting it.
Several states have taken steps to outlaw conversion therapy, and other politicians have spoken out condemning the practice.