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Reparative Conversion Therapy Policy Statement


All Licensed Professional Counselors, Counselor Interns, Licensed Marriage and Family Counselors, and Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist Interns should be advised of the American Counseling Association (ACA) policy and Code of Ethics regarding interventions focused on sexual orientation change efforts such as conversion/reparative therapy.

First, the Board strongly advises that all licensees adhere to the American Counseling Association's policy on conversion/reparative therapy. Given that this approach lacks grounding in theory and that there is insufficient empirical evidence to support its effectiveness, the ACCA policy discourages the use of conversion/reparative therapy.

In addition, the ACA Code of Ethics requires that when selecting a specific intervention, it is the responsibility of counselors to fulfill the following mandate:

American Counseling Association Code of Ethics: C.6.e. Scientific Bases for Treatment Modality

Counselors use techniques/procedures/modalities that are grounded in theory and/or have an empirical or scientific foundation. Counselors who do not must define the techniques/procedures as "unproven" or "developing" and explain the potential risks and ethical considerations of using such techniques/procedures and take steps to protect clients from possible harm (see also A.4.a E.5.d). 

The ACA Ethics committee has ruled that conversion/reparative therapy is neither grounded in theory nor has an empirical or scientific foundation. Therefore, a licensee who utilizes conversion/reparative therapy must label this intervention as "unproven" and fulfill all mandates required by section C.6.e of the ACA Code of Ethics, as stated above.