INDEPENDENCE, Mo. — The Independence City Council passed an ordinance to ban conversion therapy for minors during Monday night’s meeting. The vote was 7-0.
The ordinance would impose a fine of up to $500 for any licensed medical or mental health professional who performs therapy to change or eliminate a minor’s sexual orientation or gender identity.
It does not prohibit therapy that is neutral with respect to gender identity or sexual orientation. The ordinance also does not ban providers from providing support or assistance to a patient who is undergoing gender transition.
City Prosecutor Mitchell Langford spoke at length about the ordinance.
He said prosecuting a potential violation would be difficult, however, he was still supportive of the ordinance.
“These are going to be very difficult cases to prove if they’re brought to municipality, but I think it’s a good ordinance to have because you’re not going to get the state of Missouri to pass anything like this anytime soon,” he said.
Churches and religious groups are not included in the ordinance.