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Because of discrimination and stigma, gay, bisexual and transgender populations are three times as likely — compared to heterosexuals — to develop mental health issues such as depression, anxiety and substance abuse.
LGBT youth are four times more likely to attempt suicide.
Social prejudices and anxieties about coming out to friends and family can exacerbate underlying emotional challenges, making it all the more important for LGBT individuals to build a strong support system as they work through life’s up’s and down’s.
People need therapists to prevent and treat mental health issues that affect all of us.
Unlike your bill, mental illness does not discriminate. Reverse your decision and make sure nobody can be denied access to mental health care based on their sexual orientation. It is immoral for any government to withhold such a vital service from its citizens.
Last Wednesday you signed into law a bill that gives therapists in Tennessee the legal right to deny clients services based on their sexual orientation.
Regardless of the vague language and legalese you have hid behind in your defense of the bill, we know its primary purpose is to deny the LGBT community in Tennessee access to mental health care. Imagine a world where anyone could refuse service to people based on their sexual orientation.
The suicide rate in Tennessee is 15.2 percent per 100,000 people, which is significantly higher than the national average.