Being gay is not a form of mental illness

Ban conversion therapy for gay kids
Clicking here will automatically add your name to this petition to Governor Jerry Brown:
"Conversion therapy has been debunked as junk science, and using it on minors is a terrible and damaging practice. Sign Senate Bill 1172 to protect young gays and lesbians from this dangerous practice."
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Help ban conversion therapy for gay kids

Dear Friend,

The damaging and dangerous practice called "conversion therapy" might soon be at an end in California — the most populous state in the U.S. — if Governor Jerry Brown signs a bill that the state Legislature has already passed.

On Saturday, Brown signed dozens of bills into law1 — but he hasn't yet signed the ban on conversion therapy for minors. We only have until September 30 to ensure this bill becomes law.

So-called conversion therapy is based upon the disproven theory that homosexuality is a form of mental illness and that through therapy, sexual orientation can be changed. Thousands of gay, lesbian, and bisexual youth have been subjected to the humiliating measures of this practice over the past 100 years, including electric shocks and nausea-inducing medication paired with homosexual imagery.2 In many other cases, youth have been forced to undergo shame-filled therapy sessions with counselors and groups of their peers.

Tell California Gov. Jerry Brown: Sign the bill to ban conversion therapy of minors and affirm the finding of the legislature that being gay or lesbian is not a disease or disorder. Click here to automatically sign the petition.

California has been a leader in legislation protecting gays and lesbians from discrimination. Now the state has the opportunity to put an end to a draconian and homophobic practice that has no place in modern medicine, and set a precedent that should be followed nationwide.

All three of the major mental health organizations in the United States — the American Counseling Association,3 American Psychological Association,4 American Psychiatric Association5 — have denounced this practice. Hundreds of other medical organizations in the United States and abroad have done the same. It doesn't work, and more often than not it causes serious psychological distress.

Passing the bill costs California nothing, and will set a national precedent that will open the door to other state government bans of the practice. But more important, it will protect children and teens from the harmful and guilt-filled process that tears apart families and causes long-lasting damage that sometimes ends in suicide.6

Tell California's Gov. Jerry Brown to be a national leader in the fight to protect gay and lesbian youth and sign the ban on conversion therapy for minors. Click below to automatically sign the petition.

Thank you for standing up to protect young gays and lesbians from abuse.

Jordan Krueger, Campaign Manager
CREDO Action from Working Assets

1. "Archives for September 2012." Office of Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr, accessed 09-23-2012.
2. Dr. Gregory Herek, "Attempts To Change Sexual Orientation." Sexual Orientation: Science, Education, and Policy, accessed 09-20-2012.
3. Joy S. Whitman, Harriet L. Glosoff, Michael M. Kocet and Vilia Tarvydas, "Ethical issues related to conversion or reparative therapy." American Counseling Association, 05-22-06.
4. "Resolution on Appropriate Affirmative Responses to Sexual Orientation Distress and Change Efforts." American Psychological Association.
5. "Therapies Focused on Attempts to Change Sexual Orientation (Reparative or Conversion Therapies)." American Psychiatric Association, 05-00.
6. Kelvin Lynch, "APA: Gay conversion therapy can cause depression and suicide attempts." Examiner, 08-05-09.


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