Law firm ready to challenge Illinois law

Wednesday, August 26, 2015
Charlie Butts (

Signs are surfacing that there will be a legal challenge to Illinois' new law that bans counseling for youth with same-gender attractions. 

It's similar to bills passed in California and New Jersey that provide for fines, and in the case of licensed counselors, possible loss of licenses for providing the therapy.

But attorney Noel Sterret of the Chicago law firm Mauck and Baker tells OneNewsNow there's one significant difference.

"It's written broadly enough to put at risk not only licensed counselors but also those who are in commerce," Sterret warns. "For instance, if you have an unlicensed counselor or even a pastor who charges for counseling fees, they may be subject to this law."

The law, he further explains, would ban anyone in commerce or counseling to describe homosexuality as a mental disease or illness.

Homosexuality was diagnosed as a mental disease by the American Phychiatric Association until it was removed in 1973 thanks to politically active homosexuals and changing beliefs. 

Under the new Illinois law, a pastor who describes homosexuality as sin, even in a sermon, could be subject to the law because it is being represented in some sense as a disorder.

The new law is begging for a court challenge, Sterret says, and the law firm is willing to represent counselors and minors who want to challenge it pro bono

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