Dear Friend of the Family,
You need to know about a new bill being discussed at the State House this week. HB97, sponsored by Representative Kay Khan, would restrict the rights of minors with unwanted same-sex attractions to seek out their treatment of choice and not be labeled as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender or queer (LGBTQ). This bill would ban children and their parents from receiving counseling from licensed mental health professionals to help address unwanted sexual attractions.
Identical bills have been passed in both California and New Jersey. On Tuesday, we had a legislative hearing on the MA equivalent. MFI coordinated the testimony of national pro-family experts on this issue, who explained to the legislative committee that this legislation is a serious threat to the religious liberty of parents and Christian counselors. It boldly seeks to suppress the truth and keep our children from escaping the homosexual lifestyle. We are working aggressively with Christian mental health professionals and individuals who have come out of the homosexual lifestyle to alert members of the legislature to the significant moral, ethical and legal problems inherent in this bill. Help us spread the word by emailing your State Senator and Representative
Here are the facts on what HB97 actually DOES:
- Categorizes ANY counseling which does not affirm alleged sexual orientation in minors as child abuse.
- Allows for licensed professionals to recommend hormone treatments and ‘sex reassignment surgery,’ for gender identity issues, but bans encouragement for children to live as the sex that they were born.
- Discriminates against mental health providers based on their viewpoint on a very controversial issue.
- Ignores the recent public testimony of men and women, many of whom were sexually abused as children, who have benefitted from this treatment.
- Bans treatment, including ‘talk therapy,’ that some children and their parents want and find helpful.
- Abuses minors by withholding legitimate treatment options.
Here’s what HB97 does NOT do:
- The text of the bill makes no reference to “reparative” or “conversion therapy.”
- Does not even mention the alleged “electroshock therapy,” “nausea-inducing drugs,” or “intrusive techniques,” its proponents constantly bring up to scare people into supporting the bill.
- There is no exemption for pastoral counselors to coordinate with licensed mental health professionals. (Because they are already ‘mandatory reporters’ under existing child abuse law, clergy could be required to report any referral they received from a licensed professional).
Pro-gay activists, and their legislative allies – empowered with the recent Supreme Court decision on same sex marriage – are pushing hard for passage of this bill. We are concerned that this counseling bill may come out of Committee and be brought to the floor for a vote. We need to step up our citizen action if we are to stop their momentum. If you have not done so already, please send an email to your legislators asking them to oppose HB97, the “Sexual Orientation Counseling Ban.”