Truth Wins Out praised Illinois for becoming the fourth state (and the District of Columbia) to ban the abusive practice of “conversion therapy” for minors, which unsuccessfully seeks to turn gay people into heterosexuals. Illinois’ Republican governor Bruce Rauner signed a bill into law on Thursday. This makes him the second Republican governor to ban the noxious practice, following New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, showing a bipartisan consensus that conversion therapy is harmful.
“This is another nail in the coffin for an abusive practice that is akin to psychological terrorism for LGBT youth,” said Truth Wins Out’s Executive Director Wayne Besen. “We thank Gov. Bruce Rauner for bucking the party line and doing what is right for LGBT youth in Illinois. This is just the beginning — and we will not stop until conversion therapy is a relic of history in all 50 states.”
The Illinois measure is the first to include language linking conversion therapy to consumer fraud, according to its sponsor, state Rep. Kelly Cassidy, a Chicago Democrat who is an openly gay member of the State House.
“Our version of this legislation is the most comprehensive bill in the nation, barring health providers from engaging in this practice and affording survivors access to consumer fraud action against the perpetrators of this abuse,” Cassidy said in a statement.
Earlier this summer, the Jewish “ex-gay” group JONAH, lost a landmark case filed by the Southern Poverty Law Center, where the group was found guilty of consumer fraud.