Delaware Gov. John Carney (D) on Monday signed into law a bill banning gay conversion therapy for minors, making it the 15th state plus Washington D.C. to ban the practice, according to Delaware Public Media.
The new law also prevents the Department of Services for Children, Youth and Their Families from recommending conversion therapy to families.
State Rep. Debra Heffernan (D), who sponsored the legislation, called the practice “pseudoscience,” saying it puts LBGTQ youth at a greater risk for self-harm and “endangerment.”
“Conversion Therapy is pseudoscience and child endangerment, plain and simple,” Heffernan said in a statement.
Human Rights Campaign’s National Press Secretary Sarah McBride also criticized the practice in a statement, calling it “dangerous” and “cruel.”
“So-called ‘conversion therapy’ is dangerous, cruel and uniformly rejected by every major mental health and child welfare organization,” said McBride.
The Hill added:
Medical and mental health professionals have largely condemned conversion therapy, saying that the practice of trying to change someone’s sexual orientation is proven to be ineffective and can cause psychological harm.
A number of states have moved to ban conversion therapy in recent months, including Washington and California.