2017 - 2018 LEGISLATURE
May 17, 2017 - Introduced by Senators Risser, Carpenter, Larson, Miller and
Ringhand, cosponsored by Representatives Stuck,
Anderson, Berceau, Bowen, Brostoff, Considine, Crowley, Genrich,
Hesselbein, Hintz, Kessler, Mason, Novak, Ohnstad, Sargent, Shankland,
Sinicki, Subeck, C. Taylor and Zepnick. Referred to Committee on Health and
1An Act to create
51.608, 448.015 (4) (am) 4., 455.09 (1) (gm) and 457.26 (2) (i) 2
of the statutes; relating to: prohibiting conversion therapy.
Analysis by the Legislative Reference Bureau
This bill prohibits certain mental health providers from engaging in conversion
therapy with a minor. Conversion therapy is any practice that seeks to change an
individual's gender expression, gender identity, or sexual orientation. In addition,
the bill specifies that a violation of the prohibition in the bill by a mental health
provider is grounds for professional discipline by the appropriate credentialing
The people of the state of Wisconsin, represented in senate and assembly, do
enact as follows:
51.608 of the statutes is created to read:
451.608 Conversion therapy prohibited. (1) Definitions.
In this section:
(a) 1. “Conversion therapy” means any practice that seeks to change an 6
individual's gender expression, gender identity, or sexual orientation, including 7
efforts to change behaviors or to eliminate or reduce sexual or romantic attractions 8
or feelings toward individuals of the same sex.
2. “Conversion therapy” does not include any of the following:
a. Counseling or therapy that provides acceptance, support, and 3
understanding of the individual or the facilitation of an individual's coping, social 4
support, and identity exploration and development, including sexual 5
orientation-neutral interventions to prevent or address unlawful conduct or unsafe 6
b. Counseling for an individual seeking to transition from one gender to 8
(b) “Mental health provider” means any of the following:
1. A physician.
2. A psychologist licensed under ch. 455.
3. A marriage and family therapist licensed under s. 457.10 or 457.11.
4. A professional counselor licensed under s. 457.12 or 457.13.
5. Any social worker who holds a license or certificate granted under ch. 457.
6. A person who is practicing under a valid training or temporary license or 16
certificate granted under ch. 457.
7. A student, intern, volunteer, or other person assisting or acting under the 18
direction of an individual described in subds. 1. to 6.
19(2) Conversion therapy prohibited.
No mental health provider may engage 20
in conversion therapy with an individual who is under 18 years of age.
448.015 (4) (am) 4. of the statutes is created to read:
(am) 4. A violation by a physician of s. 51.608 (2).
455.09 (1) (gm) of the statutes is created to read:
(gm) Violates s. 51.608 (2).
457.26 (2) (i) of the statutes is created to read:
(i) Violated s. 51.608 (2).