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Columbia, Missouri bans so-called conversion therapy

(AP) Columbia, Missouri has banned so-called conversion therapy for minors.

The Columbia Daily Tribune reports the city council voted unanimously Monday to become the first Missouri city to ban the practice.

“Conversion therapy” is the scientifically discredited practice of using therapy to “convert” LGBTQ people to heterosexuality or traditional gender expectations.

A Democratic state lawmaker proposed a statewide ban on so-called conversion therapy during this year’s annual legislative session. But the bill didn’t get a hearing in the Republican-led Legislature.

Columbia is home to the University of Missouri System’s flagship campus and trends more liberal than many other areas of the state.

Columbia’s local policies have clashed with the Republican-led Legislature before.

Columbia officials drew fire from GOP lawmakers in 2015 for considering a local ban on plastic bags.

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