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Utah May Ban Conversion Therapy, With Support of GOP and Mormon Church

Utah May Ban Conversion Therapy, With Support of GOP and Mormon Church

Utah May Ban Conversion Therapy, With Support of GOP and Mormon Church

Well this is new.

rachelkiley

The Church of Latter Day Saints has officially declared that it will not fight back against legislation banning conversion therapy against minors in Utah.

If passed, it would ben state-licensed therapists from practicing any sort of conversion therapy on people under the age of 18, but wouldn’t extend to churches or unlicensed counselors.

While that may color the Mormon church’s decision not to press back against the bill, it solidifies a shift in the church, no matter how minimal. Though they are still against same-sex marriage, where they had previously backed the idea that sexual orientation can be changed with therapy, that is no longer the official stance.

“We have repeatedly stated the church denounces any conversion or reparative therapy that subjects individuals to abusive practices, not only in Utah but around the world,” Marty Stephens, Director of Government Relations for the LDS church, told ABC4 News.

This stance will be particularly important as the bill moves along, since many members of Utah’s government are also members of the Mormon church.

In addition to a certain level of support from the predominant faith of the state, the bill also has unlikely sponsors — two Republicans, Craig Hall and Senator Dan McCay.

“We want you, every one of you, to be part of the future,” McCay said, addressing Utah’s youth. “We don’t want to lose any of you.”

Utah currently has the fifth highest suicide rate among minors in the United State.

If the legislation is passed, Utah will become only the 16th state to ban the use of conversion therapy on minors, despite it constantly having been proven ineffective and actively harmful.

“For decades, LGBTQ Utahns have been subjected to the harmful and fraudulent efforts of conversion therapy, and it’s sadly still happening,” said Troy Williams of Equality Utah. “We still meet young people who are being told they can change their sexual orientation or gender identity, and the impacts are devastating. We are grateful to Rep. Hall and Sen. McCay for sponsoring this bill to protect our youth.”

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Rachel Kiley

Rachel Kiley is presumably a writer and definitely not a terminator. She can usually be found crying over queerbaiting in the Pitch Perfect franchise or on Twitter, if not both.

Rachel Kiley is presumably a writer and definitely not a terminator. She can usually be found crying over queerbaiting in the Pitch Perfect franchise or on Twitter, if not both.