Urban County Council passes ban on conversion therapy

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LEXINGTON, Ky. (WTVQ) – Thursday night the Urban County Council approved the first of two, $2.5 million grants to fund a local small business economic recovery grant program.

The program would grant up to $25,000 dollars per business with 50% of funding going to minority and women owned businesses.

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But it was overshadowed by multiple social issues.

“Children deserve to live in a world that accepts and embraces them for who they are and by supporting these protections you are sending a clear signal that our local leaders value the well-being of our young people” said Council Member, Liz Sheehan.

Council passed an ordinance that prohibits mental health professionals from engaging in conversion therapy to minors and prohibiting public funds to be distributed to anyone that provides it.

Conversion therapy is the practice of trying to change someone’s sexuality or gender identity.

According to the Fairness Campaign…Lexington is now the third city in the state to ban the anti-LGBTQ conversion therapy practice on minors.

Executive director Chris Hartman released a statement saying quote “It’s exciting to see Lexington continue to lead on LGBTQ rights in Kentucky.”

Council members showed their support with a unanimous vote.

“Clearly we are following our charter because it states it is our duty to protect the mental health of our youth and the well-being of our youth so I just want to say how proud I am of our community” said Council Member, Susan Lamb.

Another issue discussed at length once again, was Lexington Police accountability.

LPD accountability activists took turns demanding for change, even putting into question council itself.

“I think a lot of city council members don’t grasp the depth of the corruption and conspiracy and harm and wrong that’s been done by the Lexington Police Department, the Bluegrass Lodge Four, and you know in some ways by city council by not asking the right questions” said Activist, Sarah Williams.

Activists also took their chance to speak on no knock warrants, following the introduction of an ordinance to ban them on Tuesday, asking council to pass the ban.

“Pass Breonna’s law, ban no knock warrants and include adequate provisions including the minimum 15 second wait time” said supporter of the ban, James Woodhead.

Which led Council Member, Richard Moloney, to then question Mayor Linda Gorton’s stance on the subject.

“Do you support your chief on this or do you support your task force?” he said.

Mayor Gorton replied saying she has full trust in Police Chief Weathers, who has previously asked council not to pass the ban.

“I support the police having the tools” said Mayor Gorton.

That ordinance, however, will be voted on at a later date.