GOP Governor of Maryland Bans 'Ex-Gay' Therapy for Youth

17 May, 2018, 18:27 | Author: Wade Massey
  • GOP Governor of Maryland Bans 'Ex-Gay' Therapy for Youth

Any attempt to "cure" the sexual orientation or gender identity of LGBTQ minors under the age of 18 will henceforth be classified as "unprofessional conduct".

Conversion therapy is ineffective, according to several national health organizations, including the American Medical Association, the American Psychological Association and the American Academy of Pediatrics. Simonaire's father, State Sen.

Delegate Meagan Simonaire spoke on the House floor about her experience coming out as bisexual and the depression caused by her parents recommending she receive conversion therapy.

FreeState Justice Executive Director Mark Procopio said, "Governor Hogan and Maryland's General Assembly send an important affirmation to LGBTQ youth across our state with the signing of these two bills".

Maryland banned gay conversion therapy Tuesday, a move that has been met with cheers of victory from gay and LGBTQ members of the community.

"The governor was pleased to sign this bill, and believes it's the right thing to do", Amelia Chasse, a spokeswoman for Hogan, confirmed. "LGBTQ youth are ideal as they are and are deserving of every opportunity to help them thrive".

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Advocates vowed to keep working until the anti-gay treatment is banned in all 50 states.

According to a recent report by the Williams Institute at the UCLA School of Law, an estimated 20,000 LGBTQ-identifying minors could be forced to undergo conversion therapy at the hands of a licensed therapist or counselor if there is no law explicitly banning the practice.

Despite broad opposition to LGBT rights within the GOP, a number of Republican Governors have previously signed bills banning gay "cure" therapy - including New Jersey's Chris Christie, Nevada's Brian Sandoval, New Mexico's Susana Martinez and Bruce Rauner of IL.

The APA, in particular, criticizes gay conversion therapy, also known as reparative therapy, for offering a "serious potential to harm young people".

"By sharing our stories, survivors like Meagan Simonaire and myself can help change hearts and minds to protect LGBTQ youth", he said in a statement.

"I think it's fantastic, because it will save the lives of young people in our state", Madaleno told CBS.

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