New York Will Probably Ban Conversion Therapy in 2019 [BIPOLITICS]

January 01, 2019

Originally published in BIPOLITICS on January 01, 2019.

The purpose of the bill reads, “This bill would prohibit a mental health professional, as defined, from engaging in sexual orientation change efforts, as defined, with a patient under 18 years of age. The bill would provide that any sexual orientation change efforts attempted on a patient under 18 years of age by a licensed mental health professional shall be considered unprofessional conduct and shall subject the provider to discipline by the provider’s licensing entity.”

Right now, the bill sits in the state Senate Mental Health And Developmental Disabilities Committee.

I reached out to state Senator Shelley Mayer (D, WEP, WF) for comment, who said the following of the bill:

“I am proud to support bill S.263/A.3977 which would prohibit mental health professionals from engaging in efforts to change the sexual orientation of patients under 18-years-old. For decades, the majority of mental health professionals have accepted that being lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender is not a disease or disorder but simply another form of gender or sexual expression. Additionally, studies have shown the long list of negative effects from being rejected by one’s family due to sexual orientation. I applaud the Westchester County Board of Legislators and County Executive George Latimer for leading the way by banning conversion therapy. I look forward to this bill ultimately becoming law in New York State as well and protecting our LGBTQ minors from the harmful effects of conversion therapy.”

Along with Westchester County, the counties of Albany, Erie, and Ulster, as well as Rochester and New York City have banned conversion therapy.