A gay man from Zhumadian, China is suing a government-run mental hospital for drugging and beating him for two weeks in an attempt to cure him, according to SCMP.
Last year, after discovering he was gay, the man’s wife had agreed to file for divorce. However, on the day that he was to sign the papers, the wife and some family members had the man taken by force from his home to a state-run hospital in central Henan province.
Once there, the man had asked to be released but was instead diagnosed as having a “sexual preference disorder” that required treatment. For the next two weeks, the man was regularly drugged and sometimes beaten for no reason. He managed to be released from the hospital only after a friend had reported the incident to the police.
After learning that another gay man had sued a clinic in 2014 for administering electric shocks in an attempt to make him straight, the man decided to take legal action. In the 2014 case, the man, Yang Teng, had willingly undergone therapy after his parents had pressured him to marry.
A Beijing court eventually ruled that the electric shocks were unnecessary because homosexuality does not require treatment — Yang was awarded 3,500 yuan, or $530, as compensation for the cost of the treatment, according to his lawyer.
According to new reports, the man now reportedly moves from city to city in fear of being kidnapped again, but a district court in his home city agreed to hear his case on Monday. He was quoted as saying:
“The hospital’s forced treatment restricted my freedom and severely tarnished my reputation.”
It is currently unknown how much the man is seeking in damages.
Homosexuality was made legal in China in 1997 and was declassified as a mental disorder in 2001.