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The Trevor Project, LGBTQ+ Groups Applaud AZ Governor for Protecting LGBTQ+ Youth From Conversion Therapy

BY: Trevor News
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16% of LGBTQ+ youth in Arizona reported being threatened with or subjected to conversion therapy

June 27, 2023 — The Trevor Project, the leading suicide prevention organization for LGBTQ+ young people, one•n•ten, Arizona’s largest provider of LGBTQ+ youth & young adult support services, and Equality Arizona commended Gov. Hobbs of Arizona for signing an executive order today banning the dangerous and discredited practice of conversion therapy.

“LGBTQ+ young people deserve to live freely and be protected from the dangerous and discredited practices of ‘conversion therapy.’ This so-called ‘therapy’ is condemned by every major professional medical and mental health association in America, associated with poor mental health outcomes and greater suicide risk, and inflicts a major financial burden in our society,” said Troy Stevenson (he/him), Director of State Advocacy Campaigns for The Trevor Project. “Thank you Gov. Hobbs for your leadership and for taking bold action to protect and affirm young LGBTQ+ Arizonans across the state. We urge the state legislature to pass comprehensive state-wide protections and for governors across the nation to follow this lead in ending such an abusive practice.”

“Since 2018, one•n•ten, alongside a coalition of passionate community members and organizations, has led an effort to ban conversion therapy for minors in Arizona,” said Nate Rhoton (he/him), Chief Executive Officer for one•n•ten. “The signing of this executive order sends a powerful message to LGBTQ+ youth in Arizona: this abusive practice will no longer be tolerated. We are immensely grateful to Governor Hobbs for her longtime advocacy for the LGBTQ+ community.”

“Equality Arizona is excited to see Governor Hobbs take bold executive action to protect the LGBTQ+ community,” said Jeanne Woodbury (she/her), Interim Executive Director for Equality Arizona. “Protecting Arizonans from fraudulent and harmful treatment is exactly what we elect our statewide leaders to accomplish, and taking action against conversion therapy is long overdue.” 

With the signing of this executive order, Arizona is now the 27th state in the country to enact protections against the practice of conversion therapy.

Relevant Research: 

  • According to The Trevor Project’s 2022 U.S. National Survey on LGBTQ+ Youth Mental Health by State, 49% of LGBTQ+ youth in Arizona seriously considered suicide in the past year, including 54% of transgender and nonbinary youth. Additionally, 16% of LGBTQ+ youth in Arizona reported being threatened with or subjected to conversion therapy.
  • Further, a peer-reviewed study by The Trevor Project published in the American Journal of Public Health found that LGBTQ+ youth who underwent conversion therapy were more than twice as likely to report having attempted suicide and more than 2.5 times as likely to report multiple suicide attempts in the past year.
  • A peer-reviewed study published in JAMA Pediatrics found the practice of conversion therapy on LGBTQ+ youth, and its associated harms – such as substance abuse and negative mental health outcomes, including depression, anxiety, and suicide attempts – cost an estimated $9.23 billion in the United States annually. 

For journalists looking to learn more about how to cover the issue of conversion therapy, here is a guide on best practices. 

About The Trevor ProjectThe Trevor Project is the leading suicide prevention organization for LGBTQ+ young people. Trevor offers free and confidential crisis services 24/7 via phone, text, and chat and operates innovative research, advocacy, education and peer support programs. If you or someone you know needs help or support go to thetrevorproject.org/get-help/ or text ‘START’ to 678678.

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