Iowa state board explains vote against banning conversion therapy

Protesters demonstrate outside a gathering for the  National Association For Research and Therapy of Homosexuality (NARTH) in Phoenix, Ariz., in 2013.

Protesters demonstrate outside a gathering for the National Association For Research and Therapy of Homosexuality (NARTH) in Phoenix, Ariz., in 2013.

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — The Iowa Board of Psychology is explaining why it declined earlier this month to adopt a rule that would have prohibited Iowa-licensed psychologists from trying to reverse a patient’s sexual orientation with a practice known as conversion therapy.

The board was petitioned in February by gay rights advocates to consider the rule.

The board says in an order released Monday that it knows of no licensed psychologist in Iowa engaging in conversion therapy. It says any person may file a complaint if there are concerns about a psychologist’s practice and any complaint regarding conversion therapy employed by a licensed psychologist will be investigated.

The board says it already has sufficient authority to impose discipline on a licensed psychologist engaged in practices it deems harmful or unethical.

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