Virginia Regulatory Town Hall
Department of Health Professions
Board of Counseling
Regulations Governing the Practice of Professional Counseling [18 VAC 115 ‑ 20]
Action Unprofessional conduct - conversion therapy
Comment Period Ended on 8/7/2019
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8/6/19  5:20 pm
Commenter: Eric Santiago (AA VA Assistant State Dir., B.A. Inc. VP)

Ban Conversion Therapy, Support Amendment

This seems like a no-brainer... It's harmful to attempt to externally force a change to an intrinsic part of a person's identity to something more palatable by the masses. This has happened in history time and again, where a person's intrinsic nature is a threat to the conformists who see the "other" in anyone they look closely upon for more than a few minutes. Many of the people this guidance may affect are in dire need of support and acceptance from the very same people who are opposing it. It's tragic really that the opposition to this guidance tends to smack of some perceived paternalistic high ground. People are different and that's ok. But it's not ok to force people to be "normal". I understand the point the opposition also makes, that there may be some folks that WANT conversion therapy and this guidance would cut them off from accessing such state-provided services. But that shouldn't be the job of the state. The state should remain neutral in modifying the intrinsic nature of individuals, such that changes of that order are left to the individual to seek out on their own. Freedom to and freedom from.

CommentID: 75134