Liberty Counsel Files Suit on Behalf of Family Against New Jersey Change Therapy Ban

Nov 5, 2013

Trenton, NJ—Liberty Counsel filed suit on behalf of New Jersey parents against the law that bans their son from receiving counsel from a licensed professional counselor regarding unwanted same-sex attractions, behavior, or identity.

The teenage boy Liberty Counsel represents experienced unwanted same-sex attractions. When this minor was just 10 years old, he began contemplating suicide because of gender identity confusion. He eventually developed unwanted same-sex attractions. Anxious and distressed, he developed obsessive-compulsive traits and suicidal tendencies. Eventually while on a family vacation, he tried to commit suicide in front of his parents by attempting to jump off of a hotel balcony.

After speaking with their son, the family sought counsel from a licensed counselor to address the boy’s unwanted same-sex attractions. As a result of the counsel he has received, the boy regained his self-confidence and is now secure in his masculinity. He no longer or almost never experiences same-sex attractions, and he no longer has thoughts of suicide. This young man is certain that change therapy has helped him to overcome his feelings of hopelessness and despair, and he desperately desires to continue to receive the counseling. But under the law signed by Gov. Chris Christie, such counsel is now banned.

“Before states began passing legislation banning change therapy, the treatment was driven by the minor’s desired outcome. Our client and his family were on the way to that desired outcome, until Governor Christie signed a law prohibiting further treatment,” says Mat Staver, Founder and Chairman of Liberty Counsel.

“Change therapy bans are a flagrant violation of a client’s right to self-determination,” says Staver. “Governor Christie has no right coming into the therapy session of this young man and telling him what kind of counseling he can receive. This is a horrible government intrusion into personal healthcare and counseling choices. Driven by ideology and not science, this law banning change therapy will seriously harm children and their parents,” says Staver.

The lawsuit is seeking an injunction against the law.

Liberty Counsel is an international nonprofit, litigation, education, and policy organization dedicated to advancing religious freedom, the sanctity of life, and the family since 1989, by providing pro bono assistance and representation on these and related topics.



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