Pittsburgh votes unanimously to ban gay ‘cure’ therapy for kids

Illustrated rainbow pride flag on a pink background.

Pittsburgh has become the latest jurisdiction in the US to ban gay ‘cure’ therapy for minors.

The City Council in Pittsburgh earlier this week voted 9-0 to ban ‘conversion therapy’ for anyone under 18.

The measure applies to mental health professionals in the city of Pittsburgh from attempting to “cure” or “convert” the sexual orientation of anyone under 18.

The Mayor of Pittsburgh Bill Peduto has said he plans to sign the legislation.

Bruce Kraus, the president of the Council said: “We join a growing list of cities that have taken these kinds of steps. I suspect more will follow.”

Councillor Kraus introduced the proposal which was co-sponsored by Councillor Dan Gilman.

Councillor Gilman had said the motion had been brought forward in light of Vice President-elect Mike Pence’s record on supporting gay ‘cure’ therapies.

He said Pittsburghers had voiced concerns over Pence’s record and his “long-standing championing” of “conversion” therapy.

Seattle’s city council last month unanimously voted to pass an ordinance to ban the practice of gay ‘conversion’ therapy for minors.

Five US states have already banned the practice, California, New Jersey, Oregon, Illinois and Vermont, as well as the District of Columbia.

Cincinnati, Ohio was the only other city to specifically ban the practice before Seattle.

Hawaii also introduced legislation to ban the practice earlier this year.

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.

Lawyers from the Liberty Counsel, who defended Kim Davis the clerk who refused to marry gay couples, said they would sue Palm Springs if the county moves to ban gay ‘cure’ therapies.