California’s state legislature on Thursday passed the nation’s first law banning so-called "ex-gay" conversion therapy.
The legislation, which will next go to Gov. Jerry Brown for review, prevents licensed psychologists and therapists from seeking to change the sexual orientation of children under 18.
The practice, called gay-conversion therapy or reparative therapy, hits on a sensitive cultural issue in an election year during which gay rights have emerged as a flashpoint in some states. California’s legislation would apply only to licensed psychologists and professional therapists, not to counseling offered by religious or community groups.