TAMPA, FL — (10-07-19) (Gay News) (Gay Politics) — Federal judge William Jung, struck down the City of Tampa’ ordinance banning conversion therapy on minors, cited that he doesn’t believe the city has the jurisdiction to pass such a ban.
In his 41-Page Ruling on Friday, U.S. District Judge William Jung said last Friday that state legislatures and not cities should regulate health care. Judge Jung also said that the conversion ban may interfere with patients’ rights to privacy and parents’ rights to choose health care for their children.
U.S District Judge William Jung Throws Out Tampa Ban on Conversion Therapy
The city of Tampa passed the conversion therapy ban ordinance in 2017, which prohibited state-licensed professionals from providing the controversial and harmful conversion therapy practice that was falsely designed to turn LGBTQ people into heterosexuals on people under 18 within the city limits.
The Tampa conversion therapy ban called for a fine of $1,000 for a practitioner’s first violation of the ordinance and $5,000 for any subsequent violations.
The conversion therapy ban did not apply to clergy members or other providers of faith-based counseling, as long as they were not privately practicing under a state license.
As expect, the conversion therapy ban ordinance was challenged by Robert Vazzo, a marriage and family therapist with the New Hearts Outreach Tampa Bay organization, a Christian ministry. Naturally they were represented by anti-LGBTQ legal nonprofit Liberty Counsel.
Federal magistrate Judge Amanda Arnold Sansone, issued a preliminary injunction on the new ordinance back in January, but did allow for the enforcement against anyone who uses physically abusive techniques such as electroshock therapy upon minors.
Florida law restricts certain dangerous psychiatric procedures such as electrocution and psycho-surgical procedures
In Friday’s ruling, U.S. District Judge William Jung said that Florida law already “restricts certain dangerous psychiatric procedures such as electrocution and psycho-surgical procedures,” not just in conversion therapy but for any purpose.
Furthermore, Jung said in his ruling that the Tampa law doesn’t differentiate between those techniques and talk therapy. Amazing how Judge Jung came to that conclusion. It is amazing what goes through human beings head when evidence of torture upon children is staring you in the face and you still refuse to see it.
, and he was not convinced talk therapy designed to change gender or sexuality was harmful.
Judge Jung wrote…“No known study … has provided a comprehensive assessment of basic demographic information, psycho-social well being, and religiosity, which would be required to understand the effectiveness, benefits and/or harm” caused by conversion therapy,” Jung wrote.
We are sure to see this case appealed and will bring you updates as they become available.
Article by: Paul Goldberg, Staff Writer
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