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California appeals temporary hold on law banning "ex-gay" therapy for minors

SACRAMENTO, Calif. – Gov. Jerry Brown and the Medical Board of California have appealed a district judge’s injunction that temporarily blocks the state law banning “ex-gay” therapy for minors.

State Attorney General Kamala Harris filed the appeal on Wednesday with the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco.

District Judge Kimberly Mueller decided on Dec. 21 to block the law, scheduled to go into effect on Jan. 1, 2013, until its constitutionality could be determined. The Ninth Circuit also blocked the law temporarily.

Attorneys for anti-gay groups and several therapists who practice the controversial, unscientific “conversion” therapy argued before Judge Mueller that the law violates their free speech. Harris argued that the practice is “unsound and harmful.” Gov. Brown signed the bill on Sept. 29, 2012, stating:

"This bill bans non-scientific 'therapies' that have driven young people to depression and suicide. These practices have no basis in science or medicine and they will now be relegated to the dustbin of quackery."

District Judge William Shubb on Dec. 3 also issued a temporary injunction against the law, but had limited his ruling to the three providers who had appealed the ban.