Maryland bans "conversion therapy" aims to alter a person's sexual orientation or gender identity. They are also known as "reparative therapy" or "ex-gay therapy." Governor Larry Hogan enacted the Youth Mental Health Protection Act. It now protects anyone under the age of 18 from mental health or child care practitioners who would like to try to change their sexual orientation or gender identity.
Last month, we had seen that the Maryland House of Delegates passed the law by a 95-27 vote.
Maryland joins a growing number of states that vote similar laws to protect LGBTQ youth. The list includes Connecticut, California, Nevada, New Jersey, Oregon, Illinois, Vermont, New Mexico, Rhode Island, Washington State and the District of Columbia.
President of the Human Rights Campaign Chad Griffin said the new law makes Maryland “a better place for countless young people.”
“No child should ever be subjected to the abusive practice of so-called ‘conversion therapy,’” he said in a statement. “This dangerous and inhumane form of child abuse has no basis in science and is uniformly rejected by every major mental health and child welfare organization.”
Amit Paley, CEO of The Trevor Project, an advocacy LGBT group that does a lot of things for youth and fight suicide, said the law was "a victory in our fight to protect LGBTQ young people everywhere from this dangerous and discredited practice."