Lakewood becomes 6th Ohio city to ban conversion therapy on minors

In a unanimous vote, the city of Lakewood became the sixth Ohio city to ban the practice of conversion “therapy” on minors.

Organizations such as the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy, American Counseling Association, American Psychoanalytic Association, American Psychological Association, National Association of School Psychologists, American Academy of Pediatrics, American Medical Association, American Psychiatric Association, and the National Association of Social Workers have all condemned the practice of conversion therapy, especially for minors.

The overwhelming medical consensus is that being lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender is not a pathology or disease. Same-gender sexual orientation and variations in gender identity and expression are part of the normal spectrum of human diversity.

With this vote, Lakewood joins Columbus, Cincinnati, Toledo, Dayton, and Athens.

This measure is prudent. In this political climate, it is also timely. Equalty Ohio thanks the councilmembers for their thoughtful consideration, and will leave the final words to Leelah Alcorn.

Leelah was a transgender child in Kings Mill, Ohio who completed suicide on December 2014. She scheduled a blog post, her last, to post automatically after the fact.

In it, she expressed how her parents didn’t approve of her and employed what could be called conversion therapy to try to change Leelah’s gender.

Her words follow.

“My death needs to mean something. My death needs to be counted in the number of transgender people who commit suicide this year. I want someone to look at that number and say ‘that’s [expletive] up’ and fix it. Fix society. Please.”