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Supreme Court upholds ban on gay conversion therapy in NJ

By Andrew V. Pestano
The Supreme Court on Monday upheld New Jersey's ban on conversion therapy for gay kids. Photo by Marovich/UPI | <a href="/News_Photos/lp/77d3fddc1786b82cba2a2fa9aeda384f/" target="_blank">License Photo</a>
The Supreme Court on Monday upheld New Jersey's ban on conversion therapy for gay kids. Photo by Marovich/UPI | License Photo

TRENTON, N.J., May 4 (UPI) -- The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday upheld a ban on gay conversion therapy in New Jersey for patients under 18.

In the case King v. Governor of New Jersey, the court declined to hear a challenge on the ban, following a similar decision in 2014 that also upheld a similar ban in California.

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Republican New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie signed a bill banning the practice in 2013.

Supporters of the therapy attempted to present the issue as a restriction of free speech of doctors and counselors. Justices did not comment after issuing the order dismantling the challenge.

The White House recently stated that conversion therapy, a mental treatment intended to "repair" members of the LGBT community, is not an effective or ethical use of psychiatry among minors and should be abandoned and prohibited at the state level.

President Barack Obama advocated legislation banning conversion therapy applied to people under 18, five months after a 17-year-old transgender girl, Leelah Alcorn, committed suicide following the treatment.

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Doug G. Ware contributed to this report.

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