Tag Archives: Conversion Therapy Ban

Foster Parents Force Lesbian Foster Child to ‘Ex-Gay’ Conversion Therapy (Video)

In an interview with HuffPost Live this week, FosterClub member Emily Brunelle recalled how living with foster parents in lieu of her biological family prompted her to end up in “reparative,” or “ex-gay,” therapy.

Brunelle, who grew up in Casper, Wyoming, recalled.

I had some great foster parents, but the struggle had always been that I was in a religious family that was accepting of me for the most part, but I didn’t feel like I could ever safely come out as a lesbian. It was very clear to me where they stood on that.”

Brunelle, whose biological mother identifies as transgender, said the experience

really left me in a place of wondering how do I be myself safely and get to love the person that I want to love, or the people that I want to love, and still have the family and support that I need to survive?”

FosterClub is an advocacy organisation aimed at keeping young people in foster care “connected, educated, inspired and represented so they can realise their personal potential and contribute to a better life for their peers.”

White House Staffers Show Support For Ban on Conversion Therapy in Powerful Video

Last week US President Barack Obama issued a statement calling for an end of the use of conversion therapy for LGBTI minors. Now, six White House staffers – some straight, some LGBT – are also calling for an end to the dangerous, widely debunked practice of conversion therapy.

The video, which was posted by The White House on YouTube, features Valerie Jarrett, Senior Advisor to the President; Jay Davis, Advisor for Digital Strategy and Engagement, Environmental Protection Agency; Yohannes Abraham, Special Assistant to the President and Chief of Staff for the Office of Public Engagement and Intergovernmental Affairs; Amanda Simpson, Executive Director, Army Office of Energy Initiatives; Megan Smith, Chief Technology Officer of the United States; and Douglas Brooks, Director of the Office of National AIDS Policy.

Conversion therapy can be called many things – we used to call things like this “brainwashing” or “reprogramming.” It’s all about making people conform to the way things are. But if society is to grow, we need to move beyond the way things are, to the way things should be – the way things ought to be.”

In response to an online petition calling for a ban on conversion therapies, which had gained over 120,000 signatures in three months, Obama said in a statement urging states to ban therapies that attempt to change the sexual orientation of gay, lesbian and transgender youth.

Although the petition called on Obama to support a federal ban, the president has said he’ll instead call for state action.

The petition was inspired by Leelah Alcorn, a 17-year-old transgender youth who committed suicide in December after attending conversion therapy.

Mental health groups and gay rights activists say such therapy can increase the risk of depression or suicide.

US Surgeon General Vivek Murthy on Friday during a town hall discussion on Tumblr also weighed in, opposing conversion therapy.

Conversion therapy is not sound medical practice. Moreover, we all need to work together to build greater understanding and acceptance throughout our society. Doctors can and should be part of that effort.”

The US states of California and New Jersey have banned the practices targeting LGBTI youths whilreother states such as Oklahoma are considering legislation to protect the therapies from legal challenges.