Liz Truss’ leadership campaign has hinted that she plans to U-turn on banning so-called ‘conversion therapy’ should she become Prime Minister, openDemocracy reported.

Sir Iain Duncan Smith, a former leader of the Conservative Party who is now the director of her leadership election campaign, was asked about her policy on banning the harmful practice at an event hosted by the Conservative Christian Fellowship (CCF) on 9 August.

“I hate it. Can I be clear about that? I think when you start banning things like this you enter a maze of problems. And I absolutely believe that Liz is very much there,” he explained.

Banning ‘conversion therapy’ has been one of Truss’ flagship policies as Minister for Equalities for some time.

“We are absolutely committed to a ban which will make sure LGBT people can live their lives free from the threat of harm or abuse, whilst protecting free speech as well as protecting under-18s from being channelled into a irreversible decisions about their future,” she previously said.

However, Duncan Smith, who is the Member of Parliament for Chingford and Woodford Green, suggested that this may not be her view after all.

He continued: “People are allowed their beliefs. You may not agree with them all the time. But the idea you ban them from this is this kind of ghastly woke culture… I think this is a trap for politicians to head down and it will just make life worse. So Liz is strong on all this woke stuff. And I think she will certainly take the same view as I and many others do.”

‘Conversion therapy’ is typically defined as any attempt at changing or suppressing a person’s sexuality or gender identity, often involving techniques such as electroshock therapy or prayer.

It has been widely condemned by health experts and bodies all over the world, including the National Health Service and the World Health Organisation, with some comparing it to torture.

A commitment to banning ‘conversion therapy’ was first made by Theresa May’s administration in 2018, though is yet to be implemented in the UK.

“The Government has a proud record on LGBT rights, and we are committed to bringing forward legislation to ban conversion therapy,” a government spokesperson told GAY TIMES.

“Our proposals strengthen existing provisions and introduce an offence which together protects under 18s and vulnerable adults from this abhorrent practice.

“Recognising the complexity of issues and need for further careful thought, we will carry out separate work to consider the issue of transgender conversion therapy further.”

GAY TIMES has contacted the Liz Truss leadership campaign for comment.