Massachusetts lawmakers seek ban on “gay conversion therapy”

By : wire report
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BOSTON (AP) | Massachusetts lawmakers are pushing legislation to ban so-called “gay conversion therapy” for minors.

The legislature’s Committee on Children, Families and Persons with Disabilities moved two bills March 6 that would make Massachusetts the 16th state to outlaw the practice — which aims to alter a person’s sexual orientation.

Supporters of a ban say the practice is widely discredited by medical and mental health associations and can lead to depression and suicide in young people.

Opponents say health professionals who counsel children struggling with unwanted same-sex attraction or gender confusion shouldn’t face criminal liability. They point to individuals who say they’ve benefited from such treatment.

A similar bill was approved by lawmakers last summer but stalled in the session’s final hours. Republican Gov. Charlie Baker said he’s inclined to approve the measure.

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