Israel’s Health Ministry issued a warning on Sunday against conversion therapy that purports to alter the sexual orientation of homosexuals, arguing that there is no scientific proof that the treatment is effective.
The recommendation drew criticism from an offshoot Orthodox homosexual group, which maintained that the ministry misconstrued the Israeli Psychological Association position paper on which this decision was based, and argued that while the treatment had negative effects on some of its patients, others reported that it worked.
“In practice, there is no scientific evidence for the success of any method of conversion, and there is even testimony on possible damage,” the Health Ministry said in a statement on Sunday. The ministry said the reparative method “create a false impression,” of scientific backing, which it does not in practice enjoy.
Health Minister Yael German welcomed the decision, stating that it served “as further proof that sexual orientation is innate; it’s not something that can or should be changed.
“Sexual orientation is part of a person’s identity, and does not require ‘treatment’ or ‘repair,’” she added.