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Tennessee Passes Bill Allowing Therapists to Reject LGBT Patients
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“Tennessee welcomes you” …unless you are LGBT. Photo courtesy of Twitter.

Summary: Another religious liberty bill has passed in the South–this one allowing mental health care providers to refuse LGBT patients.

On Monday, Tennessee passed a bill allowing mental health care providers to not serve LGBT individuals in the name of religious liberty. The latest bill is part of a string of Southern legislation passed that allow faith-based groups and individuals to exclude those who do not align with their beliefs.


According to The Huffington Post, the bill was sponsored by Republicans, and it is now in the hands of Governor Bill Haslam, also a member of the GOP. Haslam has not indicated whether or not he will sign the bill into law.

Advocates for the LGBT community have urged Haslam not to sign the bill, and they say the bill could permit therapists to discriminate without legal consequences.

Opponents have also said the bill could allow therapists to discriminate against other groups such as people of color.

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If Governor Haslam signs the bill, Tennessee will be the only state with a law that allows mental health discrimination. The American Counseling Association said that the law violates the group’s creed that no professional can refuse treatment based on “personally held values, attitudes, beliefs and behaviors.”

Tennessee has also been in the news for considering a law that would require transgender people to use the restrooms that correspond with their birth sex. North Carolina has a similar law already in affect, which has sparked outrage amongst celebrities and corporations.

Source: The Huffington Post



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