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Bill Allowing Gay Conversion Therapy Clears House Committee

Rep. Sally Kern
Rep. Sally Kern
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Associated Press

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) - Legislation to prohibit Oklahoma from regulating the practice of so-called gay conversion therapy has been approved by a state House committee.

Without debate, the Children, Youth and Family Services Committee voted 5-3 and sent the bill to the full House.

In other states, bills have been filed to ban conversion therapy, a range of practices aimed at changing one's sexual orientation, gender identity or gender expression.

The bill sponsored by Oklahoma City Republican Rep. Sally Kern, who chairs the committee, is opposed by medical and psychological associations who say conversion therapy involves abusive tactics and is a dangerous and discredited practice. They say Kern's bill is the first of its kind in the U.S.

The measure likely faces more opposition in the full House and also in the Senate.

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