City MP Stephen Morgan lobbies for end of conversion therapy as Portsmouth Pride returns to celebrate LGBT+ community after break for Covid

AS PRIDE events return to Portsmouth this weekend, city MP Stephen Morgan is lobbying for a full ban on the controversial practice of conversion therapy.

Saturday, 11th June 2022, 4:55 am

Portsmouth Pride, which celebrates the LGBT+ community is back after a pandemic-enforced break, with a series of activities including a parade, live entertainment and stalls.

The city MP is also using the event to bring people together to lobby to deliver a full ban on conversion therapy, previously committed by government but not yet delivered by ministers.

Portsmouth South MP, Mr Morgan said: ‘Pride says to Portsmouth people, Britain and the world: be yourself.

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Spinnaker Tower lit up in rainbow colours for countdown to Portsmouth Pride 2022. Pic Spinnaker Tower

‘After two long years, I’m delighted Portsmouth Pride is finally taking place in person so that our city can come together again to celebrate the strength of Portsmouth’s LGBT+ community, and to be involved by joining the parade, speaking on the main stage and hosting a pop-up stall.

‘My huge thanks to all those involved in ensuring a safe and successful Portsmouth Pride!’

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On banning conversion therapy he added: ‘As well as speaking to fellow residents, community groups and local businesses taking part in today’s event, constituents have the opportunity to send a message loud and clear to ministers that they expect government to ban conversion therapy in all its forms.

Portsmouth South MP Stephen Morgan. Picture: Chris Moorhouse

‘Conversion practices are abuse and no LGBTQ+ person should be left at risk of these abhorrent practices. That’s why at my Pride stall I’ll be asking people to send a postcard to the equalities minister to ensure government don’t break their promise to the British people and deliver its commitment on equality.

‘I’ll be taking Portsmouth peoples’ views back to parliament.’

Conversion practices seek to change, ‘cure’, or suppress a person’s sexual orientation or gender identity. In the Queen’s Speech, the government abandoned its commitment, first made in 2018, to ban conversion practices for all LGBTQ+ people, leaving trans and non-binary people at risk of abuse.

Mr Morgan has been raising this concern in parliament and meeting local groups to ensure the government legislates for a trans-inclusive ban.

:: Pride kicks off with a parade from outside The Briny on Clarence Esplanade, Southsea, at 11am today.

:: There are performances on two stages on Southsea Common from 11.30am until RuPaul's Drag Race star Blu Hydrangea’s headline turn at 7.50pm.