Utah 19th state to ban conversion therapy on minors

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SALT LAKE CITY, Utah (ABC4 News)— Governor Herbert passed an administrative ruling which bans the practice of conversion therapy on minors Wednesday.

Conversion therapy is the practice of changing someone’s sexual orientation or gender identity. 

“The rule says that the practice of conversion therapy is unprofessional conduct for anyone who is licensed as a mental health therapist in the state of Utah,” Clifford Rosky a University of Utah law professor said. 

Roskey worked on the bill and says adults can still practice conversion therapy. Regardless, folks say the ban for minors is a step in the right direction. 

“I believe that this bill communicates that to youth that are vulnerable to this practice, and it protects them from undergoing some of the harm that I have undergone in some of the worse days of my life,” Nathan Dalley said. 

Now, psychologists or therapists who do not follow the ban could risk losing their license. 

The governor called on the psychological licensing board to look into the impacts of conversion therapy. The board found that the practice on minors is ineffective and potentially harmful. 

“We are so thrilled to be able to get to this point,” Republican Representative Craig Hall said.  “We started with some original language in the bill and it went through about 12-15 different revisions And we ended up an administrative rule that tracks the same language In the administrative rule.”

Representative Hall is hopeful that support from the governor and medical experts will prevent new legislation from reversing this ban. 

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