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Louisville city council overwhelmingly votes to ban ‘conversion therapy’

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The bipartisan vote by the city council was 24-1.

Skyline of Downtown Louisville, Kentucky. Photo by Public Domain

LOUISIVILLE — Kentucky’s largest city became the latest community to ban “conversion therapy” on Thursday night.

According to WPSD, an NBC affliate, the Louisville Metro Council voted 24 to 1 to ban the practice’s use on minors by a licensed therapist. The vote was bipartisan.

“We are very proud of the work of the Louisville Metro Council, which has once again affirmed its commitment to LGBTQ inclusion,” said Chris Hartman, executive director of the Fairness Campaign. “From becoming the first city in the state to ban LGBTQ discrimination more than 20 years ago, to becoming the second in the state to ban conversion therapy last night, Louisville continues to lead in Kentucky and the South on LGBTQ rights.”

The Fairness Campaign is the largest LGBTQ rights group in Kentucky.

According to The Trevor Project’s 2020 National Survey on LGBTQ Youth Mental Health, 10% of LGBTQ youth reported undergoing conversion therapy, with 78% reporting it occurred when they were under age 18. Youth who reported undergoing conversion therapy reported more than twice the rate of attempting suicide in the past year compared to those who did not.

“The Trevor Project is thrilled to see the largest city in Kentucky take action to protect LGBTQ youth from the dangers of conversion therapy. Based on our research, this discredited practice is strongly associated with greater rates of attempting suicide. This is a great victory for the LGBTQ youth of Louisville, and hopefully, it will encourage the passage of state-wide protections for all young people in the Bluegrass State,” said Troy Stevenson, advocacy campaign manager for The Trevor Project.

Louisville is the second city in the state to ban “conversion therapy.” Covington, a suburb of Cincinnati, was the first. Illinois banned “conversion therapy” in 2015.

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