Congresswoman Speier Introduces Resolution Condemning Ex-Gay Therapy

This morning, Rep. Jackie Speier (D-CA) introduced the Stop Harming Our Kids (SHOK) resolution, which encourages states to follow California’s lead and protect minors from ex-gay therapy:

It is the sense of Congress that sexual orientation and gender identity or expression change efforts directed at minors are discredited and ineffective, have no legitimate therapeutic purpose, and are dangerous and harmful.

Congress encourages each State to take steps to protect minors from efforts that promote or promise to change sexual orientation or gender identity or expression, based on the premise that homosexuality is a mental illness or developmental disorder that can or should be cured.

The resolution notes that all mainstream medical organizations condemn ex-gay therapy as ineffective and harmful. Introducing it, Speier said that “any effort to change sexual orientation is not medicine, it’s quackery, and we should not be supporting it with taxpayer dollars.” In addition to advancing the resolution, Speier is also investigating whether federal taxpayer funds have been spent on conversion therapy with minors through Medicaid or TRICARE reimbursements. So far, she has found two instances of mental health professionals who advertise such services and who appear to be eligible for federal dollars.