Last week Virginia Governor Ralph Northam signed into law a bill banning the practice of conversion therapy for minors.

The practice, which is often performed by religious groups, attempts to forcibly change someone's sexual orientation and is widely discredited. A growing list of states are banning the practice, but Virginia is the first in the south.

LGBTQ students and advocates at LSU are hoping the law will encourage leaders in Louisiana and the rest of the south to follow in Virginia’s footsteps.

Member of LSU’s LGBTQ+ club, Spectrum, Ezra Mendoza said, “Virginia has kind of always paved the way in terms of progressivism for the south because they were one of the first southern states to legalize gay marriage back in, I think, 2012. That was a big deal, so I think if they did this then it will cause other states to realize they have to get with the times.”