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Maryland Bans Gay Conversion Therapy for Minors

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ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - Maryland lawmakers have voted to prohibit health professionals from practicing "gay conversion therapy" on minors, after a legislator spoke of the pain she experienced when her parents sought it for her.

The House passed the bill Wednesday 95-27. A spokeswoman for Gov. Larry Hogan says Hogan supports the bill.

Del. Meagan Simonaire spoke about her parents seeking conversion therapy providers for her, after she told them as a teen that she was attracted to a female teenager. While she never had the therapy, she says the thought that her parents believed they could "fix her" was enough to "cause significant pain, self-loathing and deep depression."

The Republican says if the bill keeps one child from experiencing that, "it will be worth sharing my story with you today."

Don Rush is the News Director and Senior Producer of News and Public Affairs at Delmarva Public Media. An award-winning journalist, Don reports major local issues of the day, from sea level rise, to urban development, to the changing demographics of Delmarva.