COLUMBUS— State Rep. Mary Lightbody (D-Westerville) today gave sponsor testimony on House Bill (HB) 503, legislation that would protect minors by prohibiting certain licensed health care professionals from engaging in conversion therapy when treating minor patients.
“HB 503 protects Ohio’s youth from dangerous and discredited practices directed at changing their sexual orientation and/or gender identity based on the false claim that being LGBTQ is a mental illness that must be cured,” said Rep. Lightbody. “This claim has no scientific basis, and major professional medical and mental health associations, including the American Medical Association, the American Psychological Association and the American Academy of Pediatrics, have discredited it. Ohio must step up to make sure all LGBTQ Ohioans can feel safe and secure right here at home.”
20 states and Washington D.C. have laws banning conversion therapy for minors. Virginia was the most recent state to sign a law into effect in March 2020. In addition, seven cities in Ohio, including Athens, Cincinnati, Columbus, Dayton, Kent, Lakewood and Toledo, have banned conversion therapy as well.
HB 503 now awaits further consideration by the House Health Committee.