An anti-LGBTQ legal group is suing the city of Tampa for banning gay conversion therapy for minors.
Back in March, Tampa’s City Council voted unanimously to ban “any counseling, practice or treatment performed with the goal of changing an individual’s sexual orientation or gender, including, but not limited to, efforts to change behaviors, gender identity or gender expression, or to eliminate or reduce sexual or romantic attractions or feelings towards individuals of the same gender or sex.”
Any licensed therapist who violates this ban is susceptible to paying up to $5,000 in fines.
Keep in mind that this policy only prohibits licensed therapists from the practice but does not touch laypeople or members of religious groups.
Despite that, the legal group Liberty Counsel, who notably defended Kentucky clerk Kim Davis, say the city of Tampa is wrong to have passed the ban.
“The Tampa law is a gross intrusion into the fundamental rights of counselors and minors, and represents government intrusion into the sacrosanct relationship between a counselor and the client,” Liberty Counsel president Mat Staver. “The City of Tampa has no authority to prohibit a form of counseling simply because it does not like the religious beliefs of a particular client.”
But, the decision was not made simply based on religious beliefs but on the concern for the children’s well-being.
During the public hearings to decide on whether to pass the ban, the council members saw many examples of children going through physical and mental abuse due to their parents not accepting their sexual orientation or gender identity.
We’ll keep you updated as the court case continues.