MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – On Wednesday, the St. Paul City Council will have their first public hearing to discuss a ban on conversion therapy.
Conversion therapy, which is based on the belief that being LGBTQ+ is a curable mental illness, has been discredited by medical and mental health professionals. OutFront Minnesota estimates that in the 31 states that still permit conversion therapy – which includes Minnesota – 16,000 youth are subject to the practice every year. According to the American Psychological Association, it is harmful to mental health.
St. Paul would be the third city in the state to ban the debunked therapy, after Minneapolis and Duluth.
On Wednesday, multiple advocates are expected to speak, including leaders from OutFront Minnesota and mental health professionals.
“This year’s Pride month more than ever is a battle for our rights as a fully diverse and beautiful human community,” said council member Jalali Nelson. “I am proud to serve as an out elected official and use our combined power as a council with community to ban harmful torture practices like conversion “therapy” from our capitol city.”
The hearing will take place two days after the Supreme Court ruled it illegal for an employer to fire someone because of their sexual orientation or gender identity.