New York state to become the 15th American state to ban gay conversion therapy.
On Tuesday (January 15), the New York State Assembly and Senate voted to protect minors from the so-called conversion therapy and when the bill is signed by governor Andrew Cuomo, New York will become the 15th state to ban the dangerous and discredited practice.
Following the news, Amit Paley, CEO and executive director of the Trevor Project, said: “The State of New York is sending a clear message today that LGBTQ youth are perfect as they are.
“No one should face discrimination or the torture of conversion therapy because of who they love or who they are.
“We are proud that the New York legislators have acted decisively today to protect LGBTQ youth from the harms of so-called ‘conversion therapy.’
“We are grateful for Governor Cuomo’s leadership on this issue, and eagerly await his signature on this vital legislation.
“As much as New York is renowned for being friendly to LGBTQ people, we at The Trevor Project know that thousands of young New Yorkers have made use of our suicide prevention and crisis intervention services in the last year alone.
“Conversion therapy-related issues come up frequently, and the stories these youth tell us about being forced to try to change who they are or who they love would break your heart. Today’s votes will save lives.”
Sam Brinton, head of advocacy and government affairs at the LGBT+ charity, added: “By passing this bill so early in the new year and with strong bipartisan support, New York is sending a powerful message that ending conversion therapy should be a priority.
“The Trevor Project is proud to be part of a strong coalition of people committed to ending this widely discredited and harmful practice.
“Thousands of local New Yorkers have contributed to the work of our ‘50 Bills 50 States’ initiative, and today they are seeing their efforts pay off.”
During the assembly, they also voted for Gender Expression Non-discrimination Act (GENDA), which will ensure LGBT+ New Yorkers will be protected from harassment and discrimination in employment, housing and public spaces.
Brinton continued: “The Trevor Project is overjoyed to see New York state lawmakers come together to make a powerful statement of support for transgender, nonbinary, and gender nonconforming people.
“Every day, The Trevor Project hears from youth who are afraid that being truthful about their gender identity will lead to discrimination or violence.
“Updating New York’s human rights laws to include gender identity will go a long way to ease those fears and allowing transgender people to simply live their lives like anybody else.”