Alec Fischer is a student at the University of Minnesota. He knows the discrimination that LGBT people face, including the harmful practice of so-called "ex-gay" therapy. After witnessing recent bans on such practices in California and New Jersey, Alec wants to bring the same ban to Minnesota, and he needs your help to do it.
Alec has started a Change.org petition, calling on the Minnesota Governor, Mark Dayton, as well as state legislators, to pass a ban on "ex-gay" therapy. The Minnesota legislative session doesn't start until February, so the petition will demonstrate how much broad support there is for such a ban. So far, over 35,000 people have signed on.
The nation's leading medical and mental health authorities, including the American Medical Association, the American Academy of Pediatrics, the American Psychological Association, the American Psychiatric Association, the National Association of Social Workers, the, American Counseling Association, the American Association of Marriage and Family Therapists, and the American Academy of Physicians Assistants have uniformly dismissed the idea that being gay is something that needs to be "treated."
In recent years, even some of the leading "ex-gay" activists have backed away from their claims that people can change their sexual orientation. In April of 2012, John Paulk, renounced and apologized for his role in the "ex-gay" movement. In June, Alan Chambers shut down Exodus, the largest "ex-gay" program and apologized for the harm it caused LGBT people.
Alec hopes that this ban can help save young LGBT people who are being harmed from such dangerous practices. "Together we can spread awareness and create a movement to end ex-gay therapy in MN. Together we can show that we won't stand idly by and let our LGBT youth suffer from this unethical therapy. With your help we can show our lawmakers that we don't want to allow psychiatrists within our state to fix something that isn't broken."
Go over to Change.org and add your name to those calling for an end to harmful "ex-gay" therapy for minors. For more information on "ex-gay" programs, visit GLAAD's page, "Unmasking Ex-Gay Activists."
(Editor's note: This post originally appeared on SDGLN media partner GLAAD.)