Jewish therapist sues New York City for censoring treatment of unwanted gay attraction

Feb 18, 2019 by

by Calvin Freiburger, LifeSite:

An Orthodox Jewish psychotherapist in Brooklyn is suing New York City in federal court over its ban on counseling to treat unwanted homosexual attraction or gender confusion, arguing that the law violates the First Amendment’s guaranteed right to free speech.

Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF) is representing Dr. Dovid Schwartz of the Chabad Lubavitch Orthodox Jewish Community in his suit against a 2018 law prohibiting paid services that “seek to change a person’s sexual orientation or seek to change a person’s gender identity to conform to the sex of such individual that was recorded at birth.” First, second, and repeat violations are punished by fines of $1,000, $5,000, or $10,000, respectively.

ADF says Schwartz has served numerous patients who came to him seeking the ability to experience heterosexual attraction in order to have families that conform to their religious beliefs. Schwartz treats them by simply speaking with and listening to them.

“Nearly all of Dr. Schwartz’s patients share his faith, and they value his counsel about issues of sexuality and family in part because his perspective is grounded in their shared Jewish faith and respect for Torah teachings,” ADF legal counsel Jeana Hallock said. “The government has no right to dictate the personal goals an adult pursues with his or her therapist.”

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