NY State Assembly Votes to Ban Gay Conversion Therapy for Minors

ALBANY, N.Y. -- Lawmakers in the New York state Assembly have voted again to prohibit a psychological treatment designed to change or alter the sexual orientation of a minor.

Wednesday's vote was the second time the Assembly has moved to outlaw what is known as conversion therapy, in which a counselor or psychologist attempts to change a minor's sexuality.

Under the bill, any licensed mental health practitioner who performs conversion therapy could be cited for unprofessional conduct.

Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie of the Bronx said sexual orientation "is neither a choice nor an illness" and that conversion therapy is unhealthy and an affront to the patient's dignity.

Similar legislation passed the Assembly last year but did not get a vote in the Republican-led Senate.

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