BATON ROUGE, La (BRPROUD) ––– House Bill 605, which aims to ban licensed medical professionals from subjecting minors to the practice of conversion therapy, is heading to the House Health and Welfare Committee Wednesday morning. 

Sponsored by Representative Mandie Landry, Representative Royce Duplessis, and Representative Aimee Freeman, the bill proposes that no minor should be subjected to conversion therapy by any licensed medical professional in the state of Louisiana. If the bill passes, Louisiana will join more than twenty other states that have banned conversion therapy. The bill proposes that violators of the law could face a fine, jail time, and potentially lose their license. 

Conversion therapy is an attempt to change a person’s sexual orientation or gender identity through mental and physical therapies, however, the medical community has made strong stances against the practice because not only does it not work but it has proven to cause more harm. 

Landry says, “the main driving factor here is there’s so many children and teens throughout the state who need to know that there are adults who care about them and want to protect them.” 

The American Counseling Association (ACA) updated its code of ethics in 2017 to condemn the use of conversion therapy. In a statement, the ACA said, “The American Counseling Association opposes conversion therapy because it does not work, can cause harm, and violates our Code of Ethics. It is an attempt to treat something that is not a mental illness.” 

The bill is set for debate on the House Health and Welfare Committee floor at 9:00 am Wednesday. You can read the bill here.