Thursday, June 26, 2014

Fwd: FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Ex-Gays to Hold Press Conference in Washington, D.C. to Demand Therapy Equality



FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 26, 2014
 
CONTACT
Christopher Doyle, President
571-379-4546
 
Ex-Gays to Hold Press Conference in Washington, D.C. to Demand Therapy Equality
June 27th DC Council Hearing to Ban SOCE Therapy is Unnecessary and Discriminatory
 
Washington, D.C. – On June 27, 2014, ex-gays will hold a press conference in front of the Washington, D.C. City Council Building immediately after they testify against Bill 20-501, a bill that seeks to prohibit Sexual Orientation Change Effort (SOCE) therapy for minors in the District of Columbia. In 2014, thirteen state legislatures have rejected legislation to ban SOCE therapy for minors, including Virginia, Washington, Maryland, Illinois, Ohio, Florida, Wisconsin, Hawaii, New York, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Vermont, and Rhode Island.
 
"This legislation in Washington, D.C. is both unnecessary and discriminatory," commented Christopher Doyle, President of Voice of the Voiceless, the only anti-defamation league for former homosexuals, individuals with unwanted same-sex attractions, and their families. "There has not been a single ethical complaint or grievance filed by a client or patient being treated with SOCE against their will in the District of Columbia from a licensed mental health practitioner, yet this bill claims that therapy to change sexual orientaiton is dangerous and harmful for young people who live in the District. It's a complete fabrication for political purposes."
 
According to a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request received from Phillip L. Husband, Esq., General Counsel and FOIA Officer for the Department of Health, there has been no complaints filed against a licensed mental health practitioner practicing SOCE therapy in Washington, D.C. "Based on my work for the Department of Health since 2001, I must admit that I do not remember a complaint or grievance involving Sexual Orientation Change Effort or conversion therapy," commented Husband in an e-mail from June 20, 2014 . "The Department of Health has reported to me that no documents responsive to your FOIA request have been identified or located."

Not only is the legislation unnecessary, it potentially violates the rights of former homosexuals in the District of Columbia who have left homosexuality and seek competent, culturally sensitive mental health services to change sexual orientation. "According to a ruling in the Superior Court of Washington, D.C. in 2009, former homosexuals are a protected class against discrimination in Washington, D.C.," commented Doyle. "While the Council seems eager to grant every single protection possible to the LGBT community, this legislation would actually take away the rights of those who identify as ex-gay. It's inconsistent and just plain wrong."

When:            June 27, 2014
 
Where:           John A. Wilson Building, 1350
                        Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W. Room 115,
                        Washington, D.C., 20004
 
Time:             Committee hearing begins at 12:00pm, Press Conference to immediately follow 
                        in front of the John A. Wilson Building (probably between 2:00pm - 3:00pm)

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Voice of the Voiceless is the only anti-defamation league for former homosexuals, individuals with unwanted same-sex attractions, and their families. For more information, visit: www.VoiceoftheVoiceless.info

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