Gay Conversion Therapy Around the U.S.
Colorado is the 17th and latest U.S. state to ban gay conversion therapy. But the debunked practice is still used in many states across the country.
Conversation Therapy Is Still Happening in the US
Almost 700,000 Americans have been through gay conversion therapy. An estimated 57,000 minors will undergo the treatment before they turn 18 according to the William Institute. The movement to ban gay conversion therapy has gained momentum. Colorado is the latest state to prohibit the practice on minors.
“So many people do commit suicide coming out of gay conversion therapy. And that's something that parents should know if they are considering putting your children through this. Would you rather have a gay child or a dead child? And that's the message that I wish any mother who's considering putting your child through this should know because, do your homework.” Jonathan Fernandez, conversion therapy survivor recounts his traumatic experience.
Since 2018, 8 states like Washington, Maryland, Hawaii, New Hampshire, Delaware, New York, Massachusetts, Colorado passed bills to ban or restrict the practice in some way bringing the total number of states with conversion therapy laws to 17 states such as California, New Jersey, Oregon, Illinois, Vermont, Rhode Island, New Mexico, Connecticut, Nevada, Washington, Maryland, Hawaii, New Hampshire, Delaware, New York, Massachusetts, Colorado.
According to UCLA’s Williams Institute, the state bans largely do not apply to conversion therapy programs by religious or spiritual advisors. The American Psychological Association reported that methods to change sexual orientation included electric shocks and nausea-inducing drugs.
Gay conversion therapy remains legal in 33 states. All except California, New Jersey, Oregon, Illinois, Vermont, Rhode Island, New Mexico, Connecticut, Nevada, Washington, Maryland, Hawaii, New Hampshire, Delaware, New York, Massachusetts, Colorado.