Denver bans sexual orientation conversion therapy for minors

DENVER — The Denver City Council on Monday banned psychotherapy that seeks to change the sexual orientation of minors.

The Safety, Housing, Education and Homeless Committee advanced the proposal and the council passed it with a 13-0 vote.

“This is a very proud moment for my administration, for members of City Council, and for everyone in Denver who values inclusion and acceptance,” Mayor Michael Hancock said in a statement.

“Tonight’s vote to ban conversion therapy our city coming together and saying with one voice that we will never allow our LGBTQ+ youth to be the targets of these dubious practices, and that we are here to support them. Who they are is something to be celebrated, not maligned, and Denver will always be there to lift up our youth and ensure that they have the opportunity to grow up safe, happy and healthy.”

The proposal is aimed at state-licensed therapists in the city who are claiming that being gay or transgender is a mental illness.

Several psychology governing bodies have denounced conversion therapy, saying research shows it can increase the risk of suicide, drug abuse and depression among minors.

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