New Hampshire Republican to introduce bill banning LGBT conversion therapy

Tue. October 13, 2015 2:20 PM by Carlos Santoscoy

A Republican lawmaker has announced plans to introduce a bill that seeks to ban therapies aimed at altering a minor's sexual orientation or gender identity in New Hampshire.

State Rep. Eric Schleien told the AP that he does not believes so-called conversion therapy is effective and can be dangerous.

"I think our culture grows stronger when we're able to accept different people's lifestyles and treat people with honor and respect," Schleien said. "I don't think that's radical. You can't convert people's sexuality. I think most people get that."

But some fellow Republican lawmakers have already expressed their opposition to the bill, saying that it could undermine religious freedom and parental rights.

"There's no way anyone's going to convince me that it's proper or good to ban therapy for children, or a person of any age, that thinks that they are or want to be a gender other than what they biologically are," said GOP Rep. David Bates, a vocal opponent of LGBT rights.

Another opponent of the proposal is Republican State Rep. Josh Moore, who said that he worries that churches opposes to gay rights would come under attack or legal jeopardy, if the bill were to pass.

"What are we leading people into when we're not attempting to help them out and show them purpose in life?" he said.

Three states – New Jersey, Oregon and Illinois – followed California's lead in approving similar legislation. Washington, D.C. also prohibits such therapies to minors.

Article provided in partnership with On Top Magazine