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Virginia Bans LGBTQ “Conversation Therapy” –Law To Go Into Effect July 1


POLITICS

Virginia Bans LGBTQ “Conversation Therapy” –Law To Go into Effect July 1

Lawmakers in Virginia have successfully banned “LGBTQ conversion” therapy for minors, making it the 20th state in the nation to protect youth from this discredited practice.

On March 3, 2020, Governor Ralph Northam signed a bill that makes Virginia the 20th state in the nation to ban the practice of conversion therapy for minors. On February 3, the Virginia House of Delegates voted 66-27 to ban licensed therapists and counselors from subjecting LGBTQ+ youth to the practice, and on February 17, the Senate passed the House’s version 22-18 to approve the ban.

The Virginia law will go into effect July 1.

The practice of “conversation therapy” has been a running debate for years, and has been denounced by multiple pro-LGBTQ organizations like The Trevor Project, which released a survey in June 2019 that found that 42% of LGBTQ youth who underwent “conversion therapy” reported a suicide attempt in the prior year. The rates are even higher for transgender and non-binary youth, with 57% of respondents reporting a suicide attempt.

The Trevor Project is a nonprofit focused on suicide prevention and crisis intervention for LGBTQ and questioning youth.

Why Does This Matter?

Prohibiting the practice of “Conversation Therapy” would prevent health care providers from engaging in the unlawful and dangerous practice of deliberately attempting to change a minor’s sexual orientation or gender identity. The belief that gay people need to be “cured” of their sexual orientation also contributes to harassment and violence against the LGTBQ community and anyone else who doesn’t conform to rigid stereotypes of gender and sexuality.

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Gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, queer, non-binary+ news covering lifestyle, politics, opinions, arts & entertainment. 


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Evangelical Preacher Is Suing Scottish Event Venue For Refusing To Let Him Spread Anti-LGBTQ+ Misinformation


RELIGION

Evangelical Preacher Is Suing Scottish Event Venue for Refusing to Let Him Spread Anti-LGBTQ+ Misinformation

Franklin Graham, son of evangelist Billy Graham and evangelical preacher known for defending the religious freedom of business owners that turn away LGBTQ customers, launched a lawsuit with a Glasgow venue for alleged discrimination against Christians.

After a Glasgow venue cancelled an event hosted by notorious anti-LGBTQ evangelical preacher Franklin Graham, the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association (BGEA) launched legal proceedings to sue for “religious discrimination.” Graham has spent years defending controversial cases such as the one involving the Colorado bakery owners who refused to create a wedding cake for a gay couple. Graham has repeatedly praised business owners for standing up for their religious beliefs.

BGEA claims Scotland’s biggest concert venue, SSE Hydro, is discriminating against Christians by refusing to give the pastor a platform to spread anti-LGBTQ rhetoric. Graham’s May 30 event was canceled after shareholders of the Glasgow City Council voiced strong concerns about hosting Graham because it was likely hate speech and anti-LGBTQ rhetoric would be used at the event.

According to Graham’s website, the case has been expedited, and SSE Hydro is required to respond to the lawsuit and explain why they canceled Graham’s contract by February 27. News

Why Does This Matter?

“Religious freedom” has become a divisive issue in the US political conversation, especially around issues of sexuality and marriage, where GOP members see religious freedom as protection against having to accommodate things they cannot conscientiously support due to their religious beliefs; the DNC sees that argument as discriminatory and a violation of civil rights law, especially now that same-sex marriage is legal throughout the US.

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New Bill Will Require New Jersey Schools To Notify Parents Of LGBTQ-Related Curriculum


POLITICS

New Bill Will Require New Jersey Schools to Notify Parents of LGBTQ-Related Curriculum

New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy signed legislation on Thursday, January 31, 2019, mandating that schools throughout the state teach students about “the political, economic, and social contributions” of LGBTQ community.

According to The Associated Press, the bill passed by a 22-18 vote, and the House version of the bill passed in the Virginia House of Delegates by a 66-27 vote.

As the LGBTQ-inclusive curriculum is rolled out in New Jersey this year, the bill requires schools to notify parents about any lesson or curriculum related to sexual orientation or gender identity, giving parents the option to excuse their children from attending this class.

The bill would not restrict LGBTQ topics from teachers’ lesson plans, but the language isn’t clear as to which topics related to sex and gender would require notifying parents.

Why Does This Matter?

A year ago, New Jersey became the second state, following California, to pass a law requiring public schools to include the LGBTQ-inclusive curriculum into their classrooms.

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