The LGBTQ advocacy group OutfrontMN a held a rally at the State Capitol this week to advocate for a ban on conversion “therapy”– a religiously-motivated practice that uses discredited tactics akin to torture to “convert” LGBTQ youth to heterosexuality.
The devastating effects of conversion “therapy” on LGBTQ youth leave no room for doubt that there is no place in modern society for this practice. According to a national survey done by the Trevor Project in 2019, a staggering 42% of youth who have undergone the practice have made an attempt on their own life.
Last year, the bill to ban conversion “therapy” successfully passed through the DFL House but ultimately failed in the Senate with Republicans unanimously voting against the ban when offered as an amendment by the Senate DFL.
In response to the failure of the Legislature, the Minneapolis City Council took matters into their own hands and banned the practice, making it illegal to practice conversion “therapy” on underage individuals within the city of Minneapolis. Although this is a great victory for the city, those seeking conversion “therapy” for their children would need only to step outside of the city’s limits to be admitted into a program. With 19 other states already banning conversion therapy – including conservative states like Utah – along with the city of Duluth, it’s time for all Minnesota legislators, regardless of party, to condemn this regressive and abusive practice once and for all.