Legislation introduced to ban conversion therapy in Idaho

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BOISE, Idaho (KMVT/KSVT) — Legislation was introduced to the Idaho House of Health and Welfare committee Monday, which would ban conversion therapy.

Conversion therapy is, of course, the practice of trying to change an individual's sexual orientation to heterosexual using psychological or spiritual interventions.

This new legislation was introduced by Rep. John McCrostie, D-Boise. He told KMVT he's been working on the proposal for four years, and it's all about protecting LGBTQ youth.

“Young people who experience conversion therapy are at high risk for attempting suicide, suffering extreme depression, using illicit drugs and alcohol,” McCrostie said.

Conversion therapy is widely opposed by prominent professional medical associations including the American Medical Association, the American Psychological Association and the American Academy of Pediatrics.

The Trevor Project, the world’s largest suicide prevention and crisis intervention organization for LGBTQ youth, supported the legislation in a press release.

"The Trevor Project applauds McCrostie and all fair-minded legislators in Idaho for taking the first step to protect the Gem State’s most vulnerable youth from the dangerous and discredited practice of conversion therapy,” said Troy Stevenson, campaign manager for 50 Bills 50 States at The Trevor Project. “According to our research, LGBTQ youth who had undergone conversion therapy were more than twice as likely to attempt suicide than those who did not. Implementing these vital protections will work to save young lives in Idaho.”

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