The Right Wing

Oklahoma Republican Wants to Forbid Suicidal LGBT Kids From Meeting Gay-Friendly Therapists

Proposed by Republican Sally Kern, the state House bill is part of a slew of anti-gay legislation she wants to pass.

Oklahoma legislators are trying to pass an expressively cruel bill that would bar depressed LGBT youngsters from seeking gay-affirming counseling at school, Slate reports.

The state House bill, proposed by Republican Sally Kern, is part of a slew of anti-gay legislation she wants to pass, which would sanction discredited gay “conversion” therapy and prevent HIV-positive people from getting married.

As Slate points out, LGBT kids raised in homophobic households have higher rates of depression, anxiety and suicide, and public school counselors who can connect them with the right LGBT-friendly groups and gay-affirming therapists provide a critical lifeline.

The bill states that no public school “counselor, therapist, social worker, administrator, teacher or other individual” will be allowed to refer anyone under 18 to any person or organization if the referral “pertain[s] to human sexuality.”

While the restriction would end when a person turns 18, Slate points out Oklahoma lawmakers have ensured anti-gay harassment and discrimination will continue to torment young people in college by making it legal for student groups on college campuses to openly discriminate.

Bethania Palma Markus is a Los Angeles-based freelance journalist.

Sign Up!
Get AlterNet's Daily Newsletter in Your Inbox
+ sign up for additional lists
Select additional lists by selecting the checkboxes below before clicking Subscribe:
Election 2018