Oklahoma’s state House of Representatives has advanced a bill that would ban so-called “conversion therapy,” a widely rejected practice that seeks to change the sexuality of LGBTQ individuals, for minors.
The “Youth Mental Health Protection Act” moved past committee with bipartisan support and will soon move to the full legislature for a vote. Efforts to ban conversion therapy in Oklahoma come just weeks after Utah became the 19th state to declare the practice illegal.
About 16,000 LGBT youth will receive conversion therapy from a licensed health care professional before they reach the age of 18, according to the Williams Institute at the UCLA School of Law. About 57,000 will undergo the treatment from a religious or spiritual adviser.
When I first ran for office six years ago I made a commitment to be a voice for all Oklahomans. Today, with bipartisan support we passed a bill out of committee to protect LGBTQ youth from the harms of Conversion Therapy. We are better together. #OneOklahoma #OneStepAtaTime
— Rep Jason Dunnington (@jdunnington) February 13, 2020