A new government report has called for the nationwide termination of “conversion” therapy for LGBTQ youth. "No evidence supports the efficacy of such interventions to change sexual orientation or gender identity, and such interventions are potentially harmful," said the authors of the report from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA).

At the core of conversion therapy is the notion that homosexuality is a disease and thus can be “cured.” However, the report expresses that “same-gender sexual orientation and variations in gender identity and gender expression are a part of the normal spectrum of human diversity and do not constitute a mental disorder."

The SAMHSA report renders conversion therapy useless and instead advocates for acceptance and understanding for youths questioning their sexuality. The opposite behavior towards these youths has been “linked with health risks, including suicidal behavior and risk for HIV.” The report stresses that in order for LGBTQ youth to lead “happy, productive lives” this type of therapy must be eliminated.

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