|FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE |
August 23, 2010
CONTACT: Vaishalee Raja, Equality California
PHONE: 916-284-9187 EMAIL: vaishaleeATeqcaDOTorg
California Legislature Approves Removing Gay ‘Cure’ Language from State Code
Code instructs state to research 'cure' for lesbian, gay, and bisexual individuals
Sacramento – The California State Senate today passed a bill that would repeal a section of the California Welfare and Institutions code that instructs the State Department of Mental Health to conduct research into the “causes and cures of homosexuality,” with the implication that lesbian, gay, and bisexual Californians are sexual deviants, potential sex offenders and a threat to children. The bill, AB 2199, was passed in a unanimous 36-0 vote that included bipartisan support and is sponsored by Equality California and was introduced by Assemblymember Bonnie Lowenthal (D-Long Beach).
“It is outrageous that California law requires the state to expend scare resources in a futile attempt to ‘cure’ homosexuality,” said Geoff Kors, executive director of Equality California. “Every reputable study has demonstrated conclusively that it is an immutable characteristic that cannot and should not be changed. This offensive code must be stricken from the books immediately.”
The code, which was originally authored in the 1950s, implies that lesbian, gay, and bisexual individuals can and should be cured, in direct contradiction with an enormous body of research that demonstrates otherwise.
“Support for this bill has been fantastic,” said Assemblymember Lowenthal. “That speaks volumes about how far we've come since 1950.”
This bill, Repeal of Discriminatory Code, heads back to the Assembly for a concurrence vote and will then go to the governor’s desk.
To find out more information about Equality California legislation, visit www.eqca.org/legislation.
Equality California (EQCA) is the largest statewide lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) rights advocacy organization in California. Over the past decade, Equality California has strategically moved California from a state with extremely limited legal protections for LGBT individuals to a state with some of the most comprehensive civil rights protections in the nation. Equality California has passed over 60 pieces of legislation and continues to advance equality through legislative advocacy, electoral work, public education and community empowerment. www.eqca.org