Oppose LB167 and LB168

UPDATE (2.7.19): Senator Hunt has filed a motion to withdraw LB168, which classifies exposing minors to any form of conversion or talk therapy as child abuse.

Read the official testimony for LB167 from Tom Venzor, Executive Director of the Nebraska Catholic Conference here.

Senator Megan Hunt of Omaha has introduced two bills, LB167 and LB168, which threaten religious freedom and freedom of speech of parents, healthcare providers, private institutions, and many others. These two bills will be heard in Judiciary Committee Thursday, February 7.

LB167 - Prohibits a number of people - such as licensed counselors, pastors, and teachers - from providing talk therapy that includes any efforts to change behaviors of gender expression or reduce feelings of same-sex attraction.

LB168 - Classifies exposing minors to this type of talk therapy as child abuse.

As it is, professional regulations prohibit abusive and coercive therapy, but these bills use intentionally broad language to encompass any sort of counseling, including basic talk therapy, in order to outlaw helping someone move away from unwanted same-sex attraction or gender confusion.

Under these bills, a client simply talking with a counselor about his or her feelings, experiences, and relationships in a way that changes or diminishes their same-sex attraction or gender identity perception would be illegal. And anyone - parents, teachers, coaches, etc. -  who knowingly exposes a minor to this type of talk therapy would be liable of child abuse.

Anyone should have the freedom to pursue counseling and personal life changes that bring them true happiness, and many people have found joy in living consistent with their beliefs regarding sexuality and gender. Our elected officials should not try to deny people that freedom or coercively silence counselors, schools, and religious organizations that provide these wanted services.

From an expert: Gender dysphoria treatment shouldn't be criminalized

Make Your Voice Heard!

Hearings for LB167 and LB168 will take place on Thursday, February 7. Contact the members of the Judiciary Committee today to urge them to oppose these bills.

Steve Lathrop (District 12), Chairman of the Judiciary Committee - 402.471.2623 slathrop@leg.ne.gov

Tom Brandt (District 32) - 402.471.2711 tbrandt@leg.ne.gov

Ernie Chambers (District 11) - 402.471.2612 (Sen. Chambers does not keep an email account)

Wendy DeBoer (District 10) - 402.471.2718 wdeboer@leg.ne.gov

Adam Morfeld (District 46) - 402.471.2720 amorfeld@leg.ne.gov

Patty Pansing Brooks (District 28) - 402.471.2633 ppansingbrooks@leg.ne.gov

Julie Slama (District 1) - 402.471.2733 jslama@leg.ne.gov

Justin Wayne (District 13) - 402.471.2727 jwayne@leg.ne.gov

Megan Hunt (District 8), Introducer of LB167 and LB168 - 402.471.2722 mhunt@leg.ne.gov

Sample Script

Whenever you're contacting an elected official, please be polite and respectful! Remember you are representing the People of God!

Personalized, original emails are great to send to elected officials, but phone calls are even better. However you're contacting senators about opposing LB167 and LB168, here are some bullet points to help craft your message.

Hello, my name is (YOUR NAME), and I live in (CITY). I'm calling about LB167 and LB168 and the upcoming hearing in the Judiciary Committee. I ask that you oppose these two bills when they come to a vote.

  • People should have the freedom to pursue counseling and personal life changes that bring them true happiness.
     
  • Many people have found joy in living consistent with their beliefs regarding sexuality and gender.
     
  • People who have sought to living consistent with their beliefs regarding sexuality and gender have real stories and experiences of finding true happiness and joy. Their experiences are real, and elected officials in Nebraska should not try to deny them and countless others the freedom to find counseling and resources to help them in that pursuit.
     
  • LB167 and LB168 would restrict these individuals and organization from offering help to those seeking change, violating their rights to freedom of speech and freedom of religion.

Senator (NAME), I urge you to vote no on LB167 and LB168. Thank you for your time considering my position and for your public service to our state.

Sincerely,

(YOUR NAME)

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