Official Statement Concerning Homosexuality from the National Association of Social Workers
The National Association of Social Workers (NASW) has stated the following:
Social workers are guided by the NASW Code of Ethics which bans discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation. . . NASW believes that non judgmental attitudes toward sexual orientation allow social workers to offer optimal support and services to lesbian and gay people. NASW affirms its commitment to work toward full social and legal acceptance of lesbian and gay people. The profession must also act to eliminate and prevent discriminatory statutes, policies, and actions that diminish the quality of life for lesbian and gay people and that force many to live their lives in the closet. (National Association of Social Workers: Lesbian and Gay Issues. Washington, DC, NASW Delegate Assembly, 1993.)
The National Association of Social Workers in its Policy Statement on Lesbian, Gay and Bisexual Issues: "endorses policies in both the public and private sectors that ensure nondiscrimination; that are sensitive to the health and mental health needs of lesbian, gay, and bisexual people; and that promote an understanding of lesbian, gay, and bisexual cultures. Social stigmatization of lesbian, gay, and bisexual people is widespread and is a primary motivating factor in leading some people to seek sexual orientation changes." [Haldeman, D.C. (1994). The practice and ethics of sexual orientation conversion therapy. Journal of Counseling and Clinical Psychology, 62(2), 221-227.]
Sexual orientation conversion therapies assume that homosexual orientation is both pathological and freely chosen. No data demonstrate that reparative or conversion therapies are effective, and in fact they may be harmful. [Davison, G.C. (1991). Constructionism and morality in therapy for homosexuality. In J.C. Gonsiorek & J.D. Weinrich, Homosexuality: Research implications for public policy. Newbury Park, CA: Sage Publications; Gonsiorek, J.C., & Weinrich, J.D. (1991). Homosexuality: Research implications for public policy. Newbury Park, CA: Sage Publications; Haldeman, D.C. (1994)]. NASW believes social workers have the responsibility to clients to explain the prevailing knowledge concerning sexual orientation and the lack of data reporting positive outcomes with reparative therapy. NASW discourages social workers from providing treatments designed to change sexual orientation or from referring practitioners or programs that claim to do so. [Policy Statement: Lesbian, Gay, and Bisexual Issues. Approved by Delegate Assembly, August 1996. Social Work Speaks, 4th ed., NASW, 1997]
Taken from The American Psychological Association Online Fact Sheet — Just the Facts About Sexual Orientation & Youth: A Primer for Principals, Educators and School Personnel.