Gay News Flash: Court Upholds Decision to Dismiss Case Challenging NJ Gay Conversion Therapy Ban

When gay news breaks, we flash it.



Promising news in New Jersey: This afternoon, a court in New Jersey ruled to uphold a judge’s recent decision to dismiss a lawsuit challenging New Jersey’s ban on gay conversion therapy. More from CBS Philly:

The 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Philadelphia ruled that U.S. District Judge Freda Wolfson was right to reject the claims of a couple who said their constitutional rights were being violated because the law prevents them from seeking treatment for their teenage son. …

The couple claimed in their suit that the state’s law violated their rights to free speech and freedom of religion, as well as their 14th Amendment right to equal protection. An attorney representing the couple didn’t immediately return a message seeking comment.

It is the second time the appeals court has upheld the law after ruling in favor of the state in a lawsuit brought by a group of plaintiffs that included two licensed therapists who practice what are called “sexual orientation change efforts,” referred to in court filings as SOCE.

[The ruling Monday said] the state has an “‘unquestionably substantial’ interest in protecting citizens from harmful professional practices, and that this interest is even stronger where the citizens protected are minors.”

“Surely, the fundamental rights of parents do not include the right to choose a specific medical or mental health treatment that the state has reasonably deemed harmful or ineffective,” Wolfson wrote. “To find otherwise would create unimaginable and unintentional consequences.”

This news comes less than a week after President Obama’s administration vowed to support efforts to end gay conversion therapy for minors nationwide.