Washington state House approves ban on conversion therapy for LGBT youth

Washington state capitol in Olympia.

Washington state capitol in Olympia.

Washington state capitol in Olympia.

Washington state capitol in Olympia.

OLYMPIA, Wash. — The Washington state House of Representatives has passed a bill to prohibit therapy intended aimed at changing the sexual orientation or gender identity of LGBT youth.

In a 60-37 vote supported by all House Democrats and a handful of Republicans, the House Thursday amended a unanimously-passed Senate bill that bans aversion therapy on minors to cover therapy that tries to alter sexual orientation.

Supporters said conversion therapy is traumatic and doesn’t work. Opponents said the changed bill obstructs free-speech and doctor-patient rights.

The amendment, opponents said, could keep the original bill from passing and blocking harmful therapies like electroshock and ice baths on young patients.

The revised bill now moves back to the Senate for reconsideration.

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