People who’ve undergone conversion therapy to try to change their sexual preference told lawmakers Monday that the therapy doesn’t work and is emotionally damaging.
Lawmakers are considering a bill to stop such therapy on minors.
The therapy covers a range of treatments aimed at changing sexual orientation.
Back in 1987, Jason Zenobia says his parents sent him to conversion therapy when he told them he was gay.
“They thought they were helping,” he said. “They were ignorant of the reality of what a sexual orientation is. It’s not a pathology. It’s not an illness. It’s not a sickness. Your capacity to love other people and be loved is at the heart of what makes us human and it’s not a disease.”
Now, his parents say they oppose such therapy.
The U.S. Surgeon General says there is no scientific evidence sexual orientation can be changed.
Representatives with the Oregon Family Council and the Northwest Religious Liberty Association testified against the bill. They say it’s too broad and may restrict religious freedoms.
A work session is now planned.