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Gay man sues hospital for forced ‘sexual orientation disorder’ treatment

By Jiang Jie (People's Daily Online)    16:52, June 13, 2016
Gay man sues hospital for forced ‘sexual orientation disorder’ treatment
(The mental hospital where Yu Hu allegedly received "sexual orientation disorder" treatment. Photo: Courtesy of Yu Hu)

A gay Chinese man has filed a lawsuit against a mental hospital in central China’s Henan province for violation of personal freedom after he was forcibly hospitalized for 19 days to convert his sexual orientation.

Yu Hu (a pseudonym), 32, was forcibly collected and sent to a mental hospital in Zhumadian by his family members on Oct. 8, 2015, after he and his wife agreed to divorce due to Yu’s sexual identity.

Yu was then forced to undergo treatment for “sexual preference disorder” for 19 days, during which time he was tied to his bed and fed unfamiliar medicine. He was even threatened with violence if he did not cooperate, according to a press release sent to People’s Daily Online.

“They did it simply because I am gay. I don’t know how many other people have been treated like this. They must be held accountable,” Yu was quoted as saying in the press release.

According to Yu’s lawyer, Huang Rui, a local court in the Yicheng district of Zhumadian accepted the case on Monday, after the lawsuit was filed on May 17.

"The personal freedom of Chinese citizens is protected by law and cannot be infringed upon by hospitals or one’s family members. It is against the law to carry out hospitalization against the plaintiff’s will,” Huang said.

Yu was discharged from the hospital after his boyfriend contacted various LGBT rights groups, who then contacted the police. He has since been working and living with his boyfriend in a different city, for fear that his family will send him back to the hospital.

China's first case against "gay conversion therapy" ended in 2014 with a Beijing court ruling that a Chongqing-based psychological counseling center should apologize and offer compensation to a gay man who received therapy at the center.

The third version of the Chinese Classification of Mental Disorders (CCMD-3), released in 2001, removed homosexuality and bisexuality from the list of disorders, following the lead of the 1980 version of the U.S. Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders.

(Xiao Zhen stands holding the judgment that rules against a psychological counseling center offering "gay conversion therapy" in Beijing. Photo: Courtesy of Xiao Zhen)
(For the latest China news, Please follow People's Daily on Twitter and Facebook)(Editor:Jiang Jie,Bianji)

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