Senate Majority Leader Kari Dziedzic: Senate Takes Historic Steps to Ban Conversion Therapy, Pass Reproductive Freedom Defense Act and Trans Refuge Bill

SAINT PAUL, Minn. – Senate Majority Leader Kari Dziedzic (DFL-Minneapolis) said the Senate on Friday passed three historic measures that will ban the cruel practice of conversion therapy, protect reproductive health providers and patients in Minnesota, and provide a refuge for people seeking gender-affirming care in the state.

“While rights are being stripped away by the courts and by lawmakers in states across the country, Minnesotans have told us time and again that they want us to expand rights, not take them away, and that they don’t want us to criminalize their health care,” said Majority Leader Dziedzic. “Today, the Senate DFL majority is leading and acting to ensure the right to reproductive health care.  We are also taking steps to protect those seeking gender-affirming health care within our borders.  And we have banned the cruel practice of conversion therapy.  Today, we are protecting rights and expanding rights for Minnesotans and those seeking care in our state.”

The conversion therapy ban, authored by Senator Scott Dibble (DFL-Minneapolis), ends the practice by licensed practitioners for those under 18 and vulnerable, prevent fraudulent or deceptive advertising practices on the effectiveness of conversion therapy, and prohibits conversion therapy from being offered under medical assistance coverage. 

The Reproductive Freedom Defense Act, authored by Senator Kelly Morrison (DFL-Deephaven) protects Minnesota health providers, citizens and patients from legal attacks and criminal penalties imposed by anti-abortion extremists in other states.  In 2023 at least 24 states have banned- or are likely to ban- abortion.  Anti-abortion lawmakers are imposing restrictions on those who live in states that protect reproductive rights.

The Trans Refuge bill authored by Senator Erin Maye Quade (DFL-Apple Valley), makes Minnesota a safe harbor for transgender people and medical providers who provide gender-affirming care, if they come to Minnesota seeking gender-affirming health care.


Jess Yeganeh