VoterVoice Post

Take action now: Protect parental rights and stop government censorship in medical counseling

December 5, 2019 by Jeff Caruso

Your voice is needed; stand up for parental rights!


Unelected state regulators are again moving forward with their sweeping proposal to ban “conversion therapy” with a vague and broadly worded “Guidance Document.” They intend to ban any counseling or therapy that “seeks to change an individual’s sexual orientation or gender identity, including efforts to change behaviors or gender expressions or to… reduce sexual or romantic attractions or feelings toward individuals of any gender.”  Such a regulatory ban would infringe the fundamental right of parents to care for their children and violate freedom of speech and free exercise of religion.  Moreover, the Board has proposed banning such counseling not only for minors but also for adults – a policy adopted by New York City before its council unanimously repealed its ban following a federal lawsuit.
Take action to protect the freedom of Virginia families to acquire the counseling they choose. Submit comments to the Board of Medicine opposing its proposed ban. Feel free to use some or all of the bullet points below. Comments must be posted online no later than 11:59 pm on December 11. 
  • Parents are closest to their children’s challenges and in the best position to ensure their wellbeing.
  • Under Virginia law, parents have the fundamental right to make decisions regarding the upbringing, education and care of their children.
  • Some young people and adults may have attractions they desire to change or moderate. Others may simply desire medical counsel in choosing a particular therapy. In either instance, there should be options for families and individuals who want to make an informed decision.
  • The proposal would deny families the freedom to seek counseling aligned with their faith.
  • Licensed medical professionals with years of education and experience should not be removed from the process of helping children or adults work through their physical, mental and emotional struggles.  

For additional background, see our comments to the Virginia Board of Medicine.
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In prayer and in public, your voices are urgently needed to bring Gospel values to bear on vital decisions being made by those who represent you.
The Virginia Catholic Conference is the public policy agency representing Virginia’s Catholic bishops and their two dioceses.