Seattle Introduces Conversion Therapy Ban for Minors
Wednesday, July 27, 2016
Posted by: Sierra VanderHoogt
The Conversion Therapy Ban ordinance will be going to Seattle City Council for a full vote this upcoming Monday, August 1st.
If you live in the city of Seattle, please reach out to your Seattle City Councilmember and express your support for their vote to pass this landmark legislation.
View Lucy Homans Letter to Seattle City Council
For the last several months, Equal Rights Washington has been working closely with Seattle City Councilmember Lorena González to introduce an ordinance to affirm and support Seattle’s LGBTQ youth by banning the dangerous and discredited practice of conversion therapy.
Today, this ordinance was heard and passed by Seattle’s Civil Rights, Utilities, Economic Development and Arts Committee!
In support of this legislation, Councilmember González said, “Not only has the practice been discredited as ineffective, but it has also proven to be dangerous and damaging to those who undergo treatment with the intent of changing their sexual orientation or gender identity.”
Both Washington State Psychological Association (WSPA) and the American Psychological Association (APA) oppose the practice of these therapies, as do all major mental health and other health organizations in this country.
“Conversion therapies can be particularly dangerous for adolescents because of the vulnerability of developing brain structures during this time of life. Though the residual effects of conversion therapies in adulthood can be variable, such individuals often experience chronic depression, anxiety, guilt and shame associated with their inability to change their homosexual orientation,” states Lucy A. Homans, Ed.D., a licensed psychologist and Director of Professional Affairs for WSPA.
A ban on conversion therapy for minors is important to protect Seattle’s LGBTQ youth and ensure they have the opportunity to grow up in a healthy and affirming environment. LGBTQ youth whose identities are rejected by their families are three times more likely to abuse drugs and alcohol, six times more likely to suffer from severe depression, and eight times more likely to attempt suicide than their accepted peers.
Equal Rights Washington