The American Psychological Association has announced the formation of a task force to review current scientific trends and its ten-year old stance on "gay conversion therapies". Given the contentious nature of the subject and the growing focus on forcing adolescents to undergo sexual conversion, the six-person task force will review the current APA policy and make recommendations for the future.
In a press release dated May 21, 2007, APA president, Dr. Sharon Stephens Brehm welcomed the new task force as its work will " help inform all mental health practitioners about appropriate and effective therapeutic responses to sexual orientation". The issue of sexual conversion of adults and adolescents will be addressed separately and the final report is expected to cover the following points:
- The appropriate application of affirmative therapeutic interventions for children and adolescents who present a desire to change either their sexual orientation or their behavioral expression of their sexual orientation, or both, or whose guardian expresses a desire for the minor to change;
- The appropriate application of affirmative therapeutic interventions for adults who present a desire to change their sexual orientation or their behavioral expression of their sexual orientation, or both;
- The presence of adolescent inpatient facilities that offer coercive treatment designed to change sexual orientation or the behavioral expression of sexual orientation;
- Education, training, and research issues as they pertain to such therapeutic interventions; and
- Recommendations regarding treatment protocols that promote stereotyped gender-normative behavior to mitigate behaviors that are perceived to be indicators that a child will develop a homosexual orientation in adolescence and adulthood
A preliminary report is expected in December of this year but the date for final completion has yet to be determined.