Oregon also bans gay “conversion therapy”


Oregon Governor Kate Brown

Oregon has become the third American state to ban efforts to alter the sexual orientation or gender identity of LGBT youth under the age of 18.

Known as “conversion therapy”, the practice has been widely discredited as ineffectual and potentially harmful.

The bill, which unfortunately only applies to mental health professionals and not religious groups, was signed into law on Monday by Governor Kate Brown; the first and only openly bisexual governor in the USA.

The states of New Jersey and California and the city of Washington D.C. have previously outlawed gay, lesbian and transgender minors from being subjected to conversion therapy.

Last month, the White House said that the Obama administration also “supports efforts to ban the use of conversion therapy for minors.”

Major medical and mental health organisations around the world have denounced attempting to change sexual orientation or gender expression.

In February, England’s National Health Service (NHS) told its staff to stop referring patients for this kind of “treatment”.

While the South African Society of Psychiatrists has rejected the practice of conversion therapy, it remains legal and has been practised in South Africa, primarily by some religious groups.

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