Via the Wall Street Journal:
New York’s Assembly has passed a ban against health professionals trying to change a child’s sexual orientation through therapy. On Monday the Democratic-led Assembly passed the ban 86 to 28. It would prohibit licensed psychologists, psychiatrists, social workers, mental health practitioners and physicians from using conversion therapy on anyone under 18. Clergy would not be included. The American Psychological Association says there is no evidence so-called gay conversion therapy can change someone’s sexual orientation. Bans against gay conversion therapy have already gone into law in New Jersey and California. A proposed ban was voted down in Illinois in April. Opponents of the ban say that it may infringe on a person’s freedom of speech.
The Empire State Pride Agenda reacts.
“We’re thrilled by the rapid progress and bipartisan support this bill has earned during this session. We are hopeful that we can see this legislation signed into law this year. We call on the New York State Senate to follow the example of their Assembly colleagues, as well as leaders in New Jersey and California, the medical community, and public opinion, by passing this bill now so we can put it on Governor Cuomo’s desk for a signature.” said Empire State Pride Agenda Executive Director Nathan M. Schaefer. “This issue is non-partisan; we’re all in agreement that harming LGBT youth is unacceptable and we must put an end to this damaging and discredited practice. We cannot let another day go by where our youngest New Yorkers are vulnerable to this avoidable harm.”
The bill’s sponsor in the state Senate is openly gay Sen. Brad Hoylman, who writes:
“Today’s passage of A.6983-B in the New York State Assembly is a major step towards banning so-called conversion ’therapy‘ on LGBT youth by licensed mental health professionals. Being an LGBT young person isn’t an illness that needs to be cured. Thanks to the leadership of Assembly Member Glick and Speaker Silver, we’re one step closer to joining New Jersey and California in protecting our kids from being subject to this dangerous practice and their parents from being victims of a proven scam. Banning conversion therapy is a nonpartisan issue that should receive full consideration by my colleagues in the Senate.”
The bill faces an uphill battle in the state Senate, where the slim Republican majority has often swatted down pro-LGBT measures with the aid of “Democrats” like Sen. Ruben Diaz. GENDA, the transgender rights bill, has been approved by the Assembly seven times but has never made it through the Senate.