Tuesday, December 05, 2017

Suit Challenges City's Reparative Therapy Ban

A suit was filed yesterday in Florida federal district court challenging the constitutionality of a Tampa ordinance that prohibits licensed counselors from practicing conversion therapy efforts on minors. Conversion therapy is defined in the ordinance as "efforts to change behaviors. gender identity, or gender expression, or to eliminate or reduce sexual or romantic attractions or feelings toward individuals of the same gender or sex." The complaint (full text) in Vazzo v. City of Tampa, Florida, (MD FL, filed 12/4/2017), contends that the ordinance violates plaintiffs' free speech and free exercise rights as well as rights under various Florida statutes.  Among other things, it argues that the law violates the First Amendment rights of plaintiffs' clients to receive information.  Liberty Counsel issued a press release announcing the filing of the lawsuit.