I am a strong ally for LGBTQ youth.
Representation matters. Visibility matters. Being able to stand here as Speaker of the House knowing what that means for LGBTQ people across the state of Maine and across the country, that is meaningful to me.
In 2018, I asked the Legislature to ban the harmful practice of conversion therapy in Maine. It was vetoed by then-Republican Governor Paul LePage, despite making it through a Republican-controlled Senate. For minors, this “therapy” is associated with shame, hatred in one’s self, depression, anxiety, and suicide. That is not right. Maine kids deserve better.
The next year, I persisted. I brought a similar bill forward, again it won bipartisan support, I told my story and the bill was finally signed into law in May 2019.