New York Just Made Conversion Therapy Illegal, Joining 14 Other States and Washington, D.C.

The New York bill comes as part of a larger LGBTQ rights push for the state.

New York is now the 15th state to ban sexual orientation “conversion therapy” for minors. The state legislature voted Tuesday, and the bill passed 54 to seven in the Senate and 123 to three in the Assembly, according to NBC News.

Conversion therapy laws prohibit licensed mental health practitioners from subjecting minors to treatment that aims to change their sexual orientation or gender identity. For years, scientific and human rights organizations have discredited conversion therapy for the psychological harm it causes participants, including higher instances of depression, substance abuse, and suicidal ideation.

In 2007, the American Psychological Association established a task force to investigate sexual orientation change efforts (SOCE) and concluded that such efforts are unsuccessful and dangerous. The APA reported that the appropriate therapeutic intervention for someone seeking SOCE instead “involves therapist acceptance, support and understanding of clients and the facilitation of clients’ active coping, social support and identity exploration and development, without imposing a specific sexual orientation identity outcome.”

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