13 April 2012
For immediate release
The UK Council for Psychotherapy (UKCP) today welcomed the intervention by Boris Johnson, Mayor of London, to stop a campaign appearing on buses throughout the capital promoting the idea that a person's sexuality can be 'cured'.
The slogans carried on the advertisements by the Core Issues Trust were due to say "Not gay! Post-gay, ex-gay and proud. Get over it!" and according to reports in the Guardian would have cost in the region of £10,000.
The advertising campaign by Core Issues Trust has been criticised by Stonewall, Chris Bryant MP, LGBTory, and Mayoral candidates Boris Johnson, Ken Livingstone and Brian Paddick as well as receiving fierce criticism from hundreds of individuals on Twitter.
Di Hodgson, Chair of UKCP's Diversity, Equalities and Social Responsibility Committee said:
'We are shocked that despite their continued claims to be a tolerant organisation, Core Issues Trust seem to think it's better to spend money on a bus advertising campaign that reinforces the type of messages that lead to homophobic attitudes in the community.
'As the leading professional psychotherapy organisation, we are absolutely committed to our members providing a safe space for individuals to explore their sexuality. We utterly condemn professionals who practice 'reparative therapy' as sexuality is not a symptom which needs treating or correcting.'
UKCP does not consider homosexuality or bisexuality, or transsexual and transgendered states to be pathologies, mental disorders or indicative of developmental arrest. These are not symptoms to be treated by psychotherapists, in the sense of attempting to change or remove them.
Notes to Editors:
- The UK Council for Psychotherapy (UKCP) is recognised as the leading professional body for the education, training and accreditation of psychotherapists and psychotherapeutic counsellors. We represent training organisations and over 7,000 individual therapists - working privately or in the NHS or voluntary sector - offering a wide variety of psychotherapeutic approaches or modalities. As part of our commitment to protecting the public, we work to improve access to psychotherapy and psychotherapeutic counselling, to support and disseminate research, to improve standards and to respond effectively to complaints against our members.
- Read our statement on reparative therapy, other resources and our media work around this issue on our website at www.ukcp.org.uk/reparativetherapy
- Details of the damaging effects faced by an individual after attending reparative therapy sessions can be seen in this video http://youtu.be/5s6QL16O7Ic where Lee, a member of the Proud to be Queer youth group in Northern Ireland, tells of his own personal experience.
- Core Issues Trust are a Belfast-based organisation which hit the headlines earlier this year having organised one-day events in London and Belfast entitled "The Lepers Amongst Us: Homosexuality and the Life of the Church". A letter from organisations including Citizens Advice, Institute for Conflict Research, Council for the Homeless Northern Ireland, Advice NI, Dublin Aids Alliance, Cara-Friend, Unison LGBT Committee and the Northern Ireland Council for Ethnic Minorities was published in the Belfast Telegraph on 20 January 2012 criticising the conference and the work of the Core Issues Trust in promoting 'reparative therapy' see http://bit.ly/wCiTtJ
For media enquiries and interview requests, contact Sandra Fletcher, Communications Manager, UKCP on direct line: 020 7014 9973. We can provide psychotherapists for interview on this and other stories.