COD

Statewide ban needed

on conversion therapy

Editor, Times-Dispatch:

I applaud the Richmond City Council for passing a resolution to support the prohibition of conversion therapy in the city and throughout the state. By adopting the resolution, the council sends a strong message that conversion therapy — a discredited practice aimed at changing sexual orientation or gender identity — is dangerous and should be banned.

The council’s decision follows recent guidance from three Virginia boards that advised licensed professionals in psychology, counseling and social work against utilizing the practice. Equality Virginia has been proud and committed to work with local and national partners to educate these boards about this unsafe and debunked practice. Unfortunately, the General Assembly has failed to protect our youth by not passing legislation banning conversion therapy over the past several years.

Make no mistake: Conversion therapy is dangerous and ineffective, and while it should be banned in every corner of Virginia, Richmond is a good place to start. We can’t allow one more young person to be targeted by this harmful practice.

Vee Lamneck.

Deputy Director,Equality Virginia.

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