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Milwaukee considers banning LGBTQ conversion therapy

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Milwaukee City Hall

MILWAUKEE — Milwaukee is one step closer to banning therapies intended to convert gay and lesbian residents into heterosexuals.

The Milwaukee Public Works Committee approved the proposed ban Thursday. The full council will now consider the measure, which bars “conversion therapy” or “reparative therapy” for anyone under 18.

Alderman Cavalier Johnson sponsored the ordinance. He says the techniques are harmful and ineffective, and that banning them would show the city values its LGBTQ residents.

A 2015 federal report says there’s no evidence such practices can actually change a person’s gender identity or sexual orientation.

A group of Democratic lawmakers proposed a statewide ban in Wisconsin last year, but the measure didn’t advance in the Legislature. Nine states, the District of Columbia and a number of cities and towns have similar bans.

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