Maine Bans Conversion Therapy for Minors, State Republicans Say It Is Constitutional Right

Democratic Maine Governor Janet Mills signed a law Wednesday completely banning conversion therapy for LGBTQ minors in the state.

In the strong move to protect vulnerable youth from the ineffective, so-called “therapy,” Mills tweeted:

“Today I signed into law a bill banning conversion therapy, a widely-discredited practice that has no place in Maine. Today, we send an unequivocal message to young LGBTQ people: we stand with you, we support you, and we will always defend your right to be who you are.”

The bill ultimately bans state-licensed medical professionals from attempting to change a minor’s sexual orientation or gender identity.

Conversion therapy, which claims to be able to change someone’s sexual orientation or gender identity, has been soundly rejected by every mainstream medical and mental health organization for several decades.

Related Article: Massachusetts Fights to Protect LGBTQ Youth Against Conversion Therapy

Conversion therapy can lead to depression, anxiety, drug use, homelessness, and suicide. In 2007, the American Psychological Association reviewed existing research on conversion therapy and found that the “results of scientifically valid research indicate that it is unlikely that individuals will be able to reduce same-sex attractions or increase other-sex sexual attractions through SOCE.”

But Maine Republicans seem to think the disproven “therapy” that leads to increased chances of suicide for young people is somehow a constitutional right.

“To mandate that people lose their livelihoods, the right to support themselves and their families because they cannot in good conscience comply with this mandate is antithetical to our Constitution and to the principles that have made the United States the special place that it is,” said Republican Maine Representative Richard Bradstreet.

What good conscience would want to use practices such as inducing nausea, vomiting or paralysis or shocking them with electricity while showing the person homoerotic images?

Maine is another state in a growing list of states protecting LGBTQ youth.

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