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Sandoval signs bill to prohibit gender conversion therapy for minors

Governor Brian Sandoval signs Senate Bill 201 on May 17, 2017. (SBG)

Nevada Governor Brian Sandoval has signed a bill that will prohibit gender conversion therapy for minors.

Sandoval signed Senate Bill 201 on Wednesday, May 8.

Under SB 201, it is illegal for any licensed medical or mental health care provider to provide sexual orientation or gender conversion therapy to anyone under the age of 18.

Conversion therapy has been disavowed by medical experts and is considered a non-effective method of treatment that can cause harm to an adolescent. This law will help protect some of our state’s most vulnerable youth,” said Governor Brian Sandoval. “I would like to express my gratitude to Senator David Parks for sponsoring this bill and working to clarify that this bill will not interfere with religious liberties or rights of conscience.

The bill was amended in the Assembly to include language specifying the legislative intent behind the hill with regard to religious counseling or faith-based speech.

The legislative digest clarifies that there is nothing in this bill that regulates or prohibits licensed health care professional from engaging in expressive speech or religious counseling with minors if the licensed health care professionals are acting in their pastoral or religious capacity and do not hold themselves out as operating pursuant to their professional licenses when acting as members of the clergy or as religious couselors.

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