Saturday, 26 May, 2018

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

Grace Carr Reporter 

12:43 PM 05/16/2018 Grace Carr Reporter 12:43 PM 05/16/2018
Steven Clarke | 17 May, 2018, 18:30

Richard Madaleno, a Democrat who sponsored the bill.

Amit Paley, CEO of The Trevor Project, a national LGBTQ youth crisis intervention organization, called the law "a victory in our fight to protect LGBTQ young people everywhere from this unsafe and discredited practice".

Simonaire, who is attracted to both men and women, continued, "the pain of having her good-intentioned parents convinced of its ability to "fix her" was enough to cause significant pain, self-loathing and deep depression".

The practice has been condemned by medical and mental health associations including the American Medical Association, the American Psychological Association and the American Academy of Pediatrics. Meagan Simonaire (R-Anne Arundel Co.), in an emotional speech on the House floor, revealed that her parents had considered seeking out conversion therapy for her after she came out to them as bisexual.

Practitioners of "conversion therapy" claim to be able to change the sexual orientation of LGBT people.

Senate Bill 1028, which was introduced by Democratic State Sen.

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Governor Larry Hogan signed the legislation today along with another bill meant to help LGBTQ youth.

Connecticut, California, Illinois, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont, Washington and the District of Columbia have all passed laws or other measures banning the practice.

After the bill was signed into law, Senator Madaleno called the news "fantastic". "They are flawless as they are".

According to a recent report by the Williams Institute at UCLA School of Law, an estimated 20,000 LGBTQ minors in states without protections will be subjected to conversion therapy by a licensed healthcare professional if state officials fail to act.

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

Mathew Shurka, a conversion therapy survivor and strategist for NCLR's Born Perfect campaign to end conversion therapy, credited the work of queer and trans people coming forward to testify about the harms they experienced in anti-LGBTQ counseling. "Today, the state of Maryland took an important step to ensure that all of Maryland's young people know that they are born flawless".

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