© 2024 WUKY
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

Lexington Poised To Ban Conversion Therapy

Josh James

Lexington leaders are one step closer to approving a citywide ban on conversion therapy for LGBTQ youth.

The LGBTQ Youth Mental Health Protection Ordinance would prohibit state-licensed therapists from engaging in any practice meant to change a minor's sexual orientation or gender identity. Discussion during Tuesday's Urban County Council work session centered on whether a city ordinance is the appropriate avenue to address the issue.

"I would think we would have things in place that would prevent any abuse of the children, no matter what their sexual orientation," councilman Fred Brown said, expressing worries the city might be overstepping its bounds.

Fifth District councilwoman Liz Sheehan noted that the state has yet to act on a conversion therapy ban, adding, "I do believe that we need something at the local level to stand firm on the practice."

Despite some lingering concerns expressed by council members, the ordinance passed its first council vote with unanimous support.

If approved, Lexington would be the third Kentucky city to ban conversion therapy, with Covington and Louisville having put bans on the books in 2020.

Josh James fell in love with college radio at Western Kentucky University's student station, New Rock 92 (now Revolution 91.7). After working as a DJ and program director, he knew he wanted to come home to Lexington and try his hand in public radio.