Statement from MP Mark Strahl on the passage of Bill C-6 in the House of Commons

“Conservatives have been clear in our opposition to conversion therapy. No Canadian should be forced to change who they are. We know that too many Canadians have been harmed by this practice.”

“As parliamentarians, we have a responsibility to protect the most vulnerable in our society. That includes members of the LGBTQ community who have been the target of degrading or dehumanizing practices in an effort to change their sexual orientation against their will.”

“I am strongly opposed to conversion therapy. If Bill C-6 had simply banned this abhorrent practice, I would have voted in favour. I voted against Bill C-6 because it contains fundamental flaws that could make religious teachings on sexuality or good-faith private conversations between parents, pastors and counsellors on important personal matters, such as sexual orientation or gender identity, criminal code offences.”

“Canada’s Conservatives sought reasonable amendments to Bill C-6 at the Justice Committee to try to ensure the legislation would protect parental rights and religious freedoms. Our amendments focused on ensuring that voluntary conversations between individuals and their teachers, school counsellors, pastoral counsellors, faith leaders, doctors, mental health professionals, friends or family members were not criminalized. Unfortunately, rather than working with us to strengthen the bill, the Liberals voted down our common sense amendments and chose instead to play politics on this important issue.”

“Everyone deserves to be treated with dignity and respect. We should have worked together across party lines to try to get this right, not divide Canadians, which is exactly what the Liberal government is trying to do.”

Bill C-6 passed at Third Reading in the House of Commons on June 22 and was sent to the Senate for further study and debate.