Maryland Bans Gay Conversion Therapy

Submitted by Take Out on Fri, 04/06/2018 - 14:12

Maryland state lawmakers voted Wednesday to ban gay conversion therapy, a day after a state delegate spoke publicly about how her father, a state senator, forced her to undergo the widely discredited medical practice, The Associated Press reported. 

The state's House of Delegates voted 95-27 in favor of banning the practice following its passage in the state Senate last week. The bill now needs a signature from Gov. Larry Hogan (D), who reportedly supports the bill, according to the AP.

Del. Meagan Simonaire (R), the daughter of state Sen. Bryan Simonaire (R), said her parents suggested the therapy for her as a teenager after she said she was bisexual. Simonaire reportedly told her story on the voting floor shortly before the bill's final approval. 

“This issue is not about Republicans or Democrats nor conservatives or liberals,” Simonaire said, according to the AP. “It’s not about religious values. It’s about basic human decency. It’s about the fact that it’s impossible to fix something that was never broken in the first place.”

Her father had voted against the ban days earlier.

The bill will also prohibit the use of state funds for the practice, according to The Washington Post. 

Maryland will likely be the 11th state to ban the practice, after similar laws passed in Washington and California, among other states and the District of Columbia. 

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