Influencing Legislation and Legislators for the Lord Jesus Christ.

New York City Council Recklessly Passes Counselor Coercion Legislation

New York, NY—Earlier today, the New York City Council passed Int. 1650A-2017, which would bar anyone from receiving fees for assisting an adult or a minor in efforts to change their sexual orientation. Originally introduced in June, the bill was rushed through a committee vote, amended, and brought to the City Council floor within the last 36 hours. The proposed legislation was then passed by a lopsided margin of 43-2, and it now awaits the review and signature of Mayor Bill de Blasio. Rev. Jason J. McGuire, Executive Director of New Yorkers for Constitutional Freedoms, made the following remarks:

“With the passage of Int. 1650A-2017, change therapy opponents have unmasked their true intentions regarding sexual orientation change. Similar bills—including the Counselor Coercion Bill that has been proposed at the state level—typically limit their reach to minor clients, and activists often present such bills as child-protective measures designed to protect minors from counseling that they believe to be harmful. However, the bill passed today by the New York City Council does not just ban change therapy for minors; it also bans such therapy for consenting adults that wish to explore the possibility of sexual orientation change. In addition, the bill does not stop at banning mental health professionals from assisting in sexual orientation efforts; it bans everyone from receiving a fee for providing such assistance. The passage of this bill makes it plain that change therapy opponents have one goal: To make sexual orientation change efforts unavailable to everyone. It is deeply ironic that this bill will likely be signed by Mayor Bill de Blasio, whose wife, First Lady Chirlane McCray, published an essay entitled ‘I Am a Lesbian’ in Essence back in 1979.”

“The proposed legislation is antithetical to principles of free speech, client autonomy, and religious liberty. The New York City Council should be ashamed of its lopsided support for this misguided measure. All New Yorkers should rest assured that New Yorkers for Constitutional Freedoms will continue its efforts to block Counselor Coercion legislation on the state level.”