Kim Davis’ lawyers threaten to sue district if it tries to ban gay ‘cure’ therapy

PinkNews logo on a pink background surrounded by illustrated line drawings of a rainbow, pride flag, unicorn and more.

An adamantly anti-LGBT Christian legal group has said it would sue a county in Florida if it moves to ban ‘conversion’ therapy for minors.

The Liberty Counsel, which represented Kim Davis in her lawsuit after she was jailed for refusing to issue marriage licences to same-sex couples, has said it would sue Palm Beach County Commission if it bans counselors from offering ‘conversion’ therapies.

In a letter sent to the Commission this week, founder and chairman of the Liberty Counsel Mat Staver said: “We’ve received calls from licensed counselors who were concerned this would intrude on the doctor-patient relationship.”

Staver went on to say that his firm would sue if the Commission adopted a local ordinance which banned licenced therapists from offering “conversion” therapy to anyone under 18.

The controversial practice seeks to change the sexual orientation or gender identity of an individual.

It has been widely disproven, particularly by most major medical bodies. The American Psychological Association has stated that the practice can be damaging, and can lead to depression, suicidal thoughts and substance abuse.

Staver, however, claims that people seeking the therapy wish to try to change “unwanted same-sex attraction”, and he says therapists should be allowed to attempt to do so.

But the Palm Beach Human Rights Council’s Rand Hoch, founder and president, said he and the firm would help defend against a lawsuit challenging the ordinance.

He said he would attempt to block taxpayers from being forced to foot the bill if the Liberty Counsel were to sue.

“There’s no reason at all why children who have no legal capacity to consent should be subjected to this quackery,” he said.

“There is no scientific evidence anywhere that can be produced by these so-called Christian therapists that this actually works. What it really is is child abuse, and it’s bordering on torture.”

While the local ordinance seeks to ban licenced therapists from practicing “conversion” therapy, it would not affect unlicenced religious counsellors.