California has become the first state to ban a controversial conversion therapy, aimed at changing a minor’s sexual orientation. Governor Jerry Brown signed legislation on Saturday making California the first state in the US to ban mental health providers from attempting sexual orientation change efforts with minors. "This bill bans non-scientific therapies that have dryven young people to depression and suicide. These practices have no basis in science or medicine and they will now be relegated to the dustbin of quackery," Governor Brown said in a statement.
The bill was passed by Senator Ted Lieu (D-Torrance). "No on should stand idly by while children are being psychological abused, and anyone who forces a child to try change their sexual orientation must understand this is unacceptable. Governor Brown should be commended for protecting LGBT(lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community) youth by ending this type of quackery," the Senator said.
Republican lawmakers called the bill "an intrusion by the state into the decision of parents about how to raise their children." Republicans will file a lawsuit alleging the measure violates constitutional protections."The privacy concerns are fairly significant. In our view, it’s an intrusion beyond what the government has done before."
Earlier this year the NARTH (National Association for Research and Therapy of Homosexuality) released a statement on sexual orientation change. " First and foremost, it is important to recognize that how change is conceptualized has vast implications for our thinking about change. Some of the more ardent proponents and opponents of homosexual sexual orientation change may view change in strictly categorial terms, where change is an all-or-nothing experience," the statement continues. "Proponents and opponents with this view differ only in the direction of their desired outcome. Proponents of change understood in categorical terms may view a homosexual sexual orientation as a lifestyle choice that merely needs to be renounced. Opponents who take this viewpoint, on the other hand, may conceive of sexual orientation as essentially hard wired and simply not modifiable. NARTH does not support either of these perspectives."