Chancellor Angela Merkel’s spokesman, Steffen Steibert, said Wednesday that Germany is banning so-called gay conversion therapy for minors and for adults who have diminished decision-making capabilities. Steibert stated that gay conversion therapy has no scientific basis and results in psychological harm. The goal is to “protect’s people’s right to sexual self-determination.”
Federal Minister of Health Jens Spahn said in a statement that “homosexuality is not a disease.” The law will apply to adults whose consent display a lack of will, such as coercion, threat and deception.
The law will also ban the “public promotion, offering and mediation of such treatments.” Anyone who violates the advertising ban will be punished with a fine of up to 30,000 euros and anyone who violates the conversion therapy ban can face up to a year in prison.
The law is expected to go into effect in the middle of next year.