In the midst of the craziness of the New Hampshire primary and our work going on here, I joined our friends at GLAD and NCLR to testify yesterday in favor of HB1661, a ban on the dangerous and discredited practice of conversion therapy in my home state.
From clergy, to a representative from the National Association of Social Workers, to the powerful stories from survivors of conversion therapy and their loved ones, the testimony provided a powerful reminder of why this legislation is needed. Only one person testified in opposition to the bill.
Conversion therapy falsely claims to change a person’s sexual orientation or gender identity or expression. Such practices have been rejected by every mainstream medical and mental health organization of decades, butdue to continuing discrimination and societal bias against LGBT people, some practitioners continue to conduct conversion therapy. Minors are especially vulnerable, and conversion therapy can lead to depression, anxiety, drug use, homelessness, and suicide.
California, New Jersey, Oregon, Illinois and the District of Columbia have passed laws to prevent licensed providers from offering conversion therapy to minors.
We can’t allow one more young person to be targeted and hurt by this torturous practice.