Washington State Moves To Ban Gay Conversion Therapy

HuffPost
Washington state's legislature passed a bill on Saturday that would ban therapists from forcing gay conversion therapy upon a minor.
Washington state's legislature passed a bill on Saturday that would ban therapists from forcing gay conversion therapy upon a minor.

Washington state is one signature away from banning licensed therapists from trying to convert a minor’s sexual orientation.

The state’s Senate passed a bill on Saturday that will impose sanctions on licensed therapists should they attempt to performgay conversion therapyon someone under the age of 18.

Scroll to continue with content
Ad

Senate Bill 5722, whichpassed on a 33-16 vote, now goes to Washington Gov. Jay Inslee (D) for his signature. Inslee is expected to sign it,according to Tacoma’s News Tribune.

Those found guilty of breaking the law could face fines, medical license revocation or suspension.

Conversion therapy involving a minor is already banned in nine states ― California, Connecticut, Nevada, New Jersey, Oregon, Illinois, Vermont, New Mexico and Rhode Island ― as well as the District of Columbia. New Hampshire’s House of Representatives last month passed a similar bill that bans the practice.That bill is slated to go before the state’s Senate, whichrejected a similar bill in January.

Seattle, Washington’s largest city,also banned the practice in 2016.

It’s estimated that 698,000 LGBTQ adults in the U.S. have received treatment to change their sexual orientation or gender at some point in their lives, according to a recent report by the Williams Institute on Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity Law and Public Policy at UCLA School of Law. Of that estimate, 350,000 received treatment as adolescents.

In states that don’t have such protections, the report states that an estimated 20,000 LGBTQ minors will be affected by the practice.

The Human Rights Campaign, a LGBTQ organization, celebrated the Washington Legislature’s decisionand called upon Inslee to “sign this crucially important” bill.

“Children across the Evergreen State deserve to live their lives authentically and should never be subjected to the abusive practice of so-called conversion therapy,” HRC Senior Vice President for Policy and Political Affairs JoDee Winterhof said.

Related...

Members Of Congress Urge Ban On Gay Conversion Therapy

My Greatest Magic Trick? Escaping Gay Conversion Therapy

Conversion 'Therapy' Survivor Shares Harrowing Experience

I'm Still Gay After Mormon Gay Conversion Therapy

This article originally appeared on HuffPost.

What to Read Next