Guy Albert and Jim Walker offer this midyear update about our efforts since our presentation to the Mental Health Liaison Group and our meetings with the American Psychological Association and Congressional staffers in April in Washington, DC. Guy and Jim have been engaged in extensive outreach to national organizations asking them to join our workgroup whose purpose is to issue a joint statement declaring “conversion therapy” unethical and harmful for anyone. Our hope is that all the major medical and psychological bodies in the U.S. will join us.
Our workgroup already includes representatives from AASECT, NASW, ACA, The Trevor Project, HRC, National Association of School Psychologists, the LGBT-Affirmative Therapist Guild of Utah, American Psychoanalytic Association and Clinical Social Work Association. We continue doing intensive outreach with the American Psychological Association and the American Psychiatric Association, AMA, SAMSHA, the Surgeon General, the American Academy of Nursing and other major national organizations hoping they will join us.
If you have contacts in key national health organizations who could help us with our outreach, please contact us.
Major national health organizations declaring conversion therapy unethical and harmful would be greatly beneficial. It would provide guidance to the public and would contribute to more extensive legal protections. Those protections would come on state and federal levels. For example, our effort would lend substantial support to Congressman Ted Lieu’s Therapeutic Fraud Prevention Act, which faces many hurdles in Congress. https://lieu.house.gov/media-center/press-releases/congressman-lieu-announces-therapeutic-fraud-prevention-act
Ted Lieu was the California state senator who introduced the bill several years ago that became the law protecting youth from conversion therapy in California by licensed providers. The Therapeutic Fraud Prevention Act and our joint national statement are aimed at protecting everyone from the unethical, harmful and fraudulent practices of conversion therapy whether it is focused on sexual orientation, gender identity or both.
Jim Walker, LMFT
Guy Albert, PhD