Saturday, May 26, 2018

Hawaii Bans Conversion Therapy

Hawaii Governor David Ige signed a bill sponsored by Hawaii Senator Stanley Chang into law Friday that will protect Hawaii LGBTQ youth from the horrendous practice of conversion therapy by health professionals. Conversion therapy, sometimes called “ex-gay therapy” attempts to change an individual’s sexual orientation or gender identity & has been discredited by every major medical & mental health organization as an ineffective & harmful practice. The practice of conversion therapy by licensed professionals against minors has now been prohibited by 12 states & the District of Columbia & there is a growing movement across the country to end conversion therapy nationally. Mathew Shurka stated, “As a survivor, I know how harmful conversion therapy can be & I could not be happier that Hawaii has taken this important step to protect the health & safety of its LGBTQ youth from this terrible practice. There are currently more than 700,000 survivors nationally & an estimated 77,000 teenagers across the country will be subjected to conversion therapy over the next five years.” Conversion Therapy has been banned in Connecticut, California, Nevada, New Jersey, the District of Columbia, Oregon, Illinois, Vermont, New York, New Mexico, Rhode Island, Washington, Maryland & now Hawaii all have laws or regulations protecting youth from this abusive practice. A growing number of municipalities have also enacted similar protections, including cities & counties in Ohio, Pennsylvania, Washington, Florida, New York, Arizona & Wisconsin. The Hawaii bill signing was the result of targeted grassroots advocacy efforts by the National Center for Lesbian Rights (NCLR), local advocacy group the LGBT Caucus of the Democratic Party of Hawai’I & the Human Rights Campaign (HRC). For More Info: nclrights.org
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