US: Washington bill would class ‘gay cure’ therapy as unprofessional conduct for therapists

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Therapists who attempt to “cure” gay teens could soon be charged with unprofessional conduct under a new bill in Washington state.

The bill would ban doctors and licensed therapists from the practice on people under the age of 18.

It would bar the professionals from attempting the therapy, known as “sexual orientation change efforts” or “reparative therapy.”

Heated testimony took place around the bill earlier this week, as arguments were heard by a Senate committee.

Many of those who spoke at the committee were those who had unsuccessfully attempted the therapy.

Religious opponents to the bill however said that it interferes with churches, and church teachings against homosexuality.

A federal appeals court in the US last August upheld a ban in the US state of California on the extremely controversial practice of gay “conversion” therapy for minors.

In September 2012, campaigners and medical professionals welcomed California Governor Jerry Brown’s decision to ban teenagers from accessing discredited treatments that seek to reject an LGBT identity.

New Jersey Governor, Chris Christie also last year signed into law a ban on gay conversion therapy for those under 18 years of age.