Legislative Council: Wednesday, February 07, 2024


Conversion Practices

The Hon. T.A. FRANKS (15:13): I seek leave to make a brief explanation before addressing a question to the Attorney as Leader of the Government in this place, representing the Premier, a question about banning conversion practices.

Leave granted.

The Hon. T.A. FRANKS: On 8 February 2022, in a letter to the South Australian Rainbow Advocacy Alliance, the then Leader of the Opposition and now Premier said:

Labor is fundamentally opposed to the practice of conversion therapy which tries to change someone's sexual orientation or gender identity and if elected, will work to ensure this practice does not occur in South Australia.

I note that bans are already in place in Queensland, Victoria and the ACT, and both New South Wales and Tasmania have announced in recent years that they will be also banning conversion practices, so most of Australia has now moved this way. My questions, therefore, to the Attorney are:

1. Is this a promise that is currently the remit of the Premier's Delivery Unit?

2. Has the Premier met with survivors of conversion practices in South Australia?

3. How is the Malinauskas government ensuring that conversion practices do not occur in our state?

The Hon. K.J. MAHER (Minister for Aboriginal Affairs, Attorney-General, Minister for Industrial Relations and Public Sector) (15:14): I thank the honourable member for her question. The elements of her question that pertain to what the Premier has done or who the Premier has met I will obviously have to refer to the Premier. I will be happy to do so and bring back a reply for the honourable member.

In relation to the banning of conversion practices in South Australia, it is an area that straddles a couple of portfolios. Certainly, I am involved in that as Attorney-General and also the Minister for Human Services, Nat Cook, is involved in that area. I know that both of our departments have done work on this to date, particularly that analysis of jurisdictions, and as the honourable member has said there are various ways that this is done in different parts of Australia, and New Zealand has moved to make legislative change in recent times as well.

I am happy to find out exactly where that is up to and bring back a reply for the honourable member in terms of other work that has already been undertaken.