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New York State Reforms Regulations to Prevent Gay Conversion Therapy

Erie County, NY- In October of 2014, Erie County Legislator Patrick Burke (D- 7th District) submitted a resolution that would deem the practice of conversion therapy to be defined as maltreatment under the law in Erie County and New York State.  Conversion therapy is defined as counseling or psychotherapy techniques that attempt to alter ones sexual desires or gender identity. Denounced by many medical and professional organizations for its harmful effects, conversion therapy can be detrimental both emotionally and psychologically to those who experience it


Today New York State Governor Andrew Cuomo announced a series of regulations that will prevent the practice of conversion therapy treatment. With this executive order Governor Cuomo will be enacting a series of multi-agency reforms to help protect the LGBT community from this harmful and ineffective practice.


“I’m pleased to see that Governor Cuomo has recognized how crucial it is to protect those most vulnerable to discrimination and prejudice. We should call conversion therapy what it is, child abuse. No matter your opinion on gay rights, we can all agree that this disturbing practice should be outlawed. There is no scientific fact behind conversion therapy,” said Burke. “This hateful practice born out of bigotry is cruel and extremely dangerous. LGBT people deserve the same protection and safety under the law afforded to all other members of the community. I am proud to have played a role in bringing this issue to the forefront and preventing further harm and intolerance.”

Governor Cuomo’s executive order includes new regulations on insurers and their ability to provide coverage for these treatments, along with additional New York State Department of Mental Health and New York State Department of Health Regulations.