AUGUSTA, Maine (AP) — Maine would ban painful, coercive or shame-inducing efforts to discourage same-sex attraction under a Democrat’s bill.
The Portland Press Herald reports that Rep. Ryan Fecteau’s bill faces votes in the House and Senate within the next month.
Supporters of so-called “conversion therapy” say the bill could hurt parental rights and jeopardize the work of faith-based counselors. Two lawmakers have offered a milder version of the bill that would ban physical methods like electroshock therapy while leaving open room for verbal abuse.
Fecteau’s bill would allow faith-based counselors to try to help clients understand their sexual orientation. His bill received support this month from the Legislature’s Labor, Commerce, Research and Economic Development Committee.
At least nine other states have similar bans. About 19 states are considering conversation therapy legislation in 2018.