Parents and Friends of Ex-Gays and Gays

Parents and Friends of Ex-Gays and Gays

Parents and Friends of Ex-Gays and Gays (PFOX) is a non-profit organization providing outreach, education, and public awareness in support of the ex-gay community. [ PFOX - "About Us"] ] PFOX maintains that homosexuality is a choice, not a product of biological determination. The PFOX website states: "We must seek the facts and love our children unconditionally without having to affirm their homosexual behavior." The organization is a signatory member of Positive Alternatives to Homosexuality (PATH), which is "a non-profit coalition of organizations that help people with unwanted same-sex attractions (SSA) realize their personal goals for change -- whether by developing their innate heterosexual potential or by embracing a lifestyle as a single, non-sexually active man or woman." [ [ PATH] ] Richard Cohen was once the president of PFOX, and Cohen was a founding member of PATH. PFOX also advocates acceptance of people who identify as ex-gay. The current National Director of PFOX, whose son is openly gay, [ [ Love Machine: Getting Holy, Hetero and Happy with the Ex-Gay Ministries: Feature Story at Metro Weekly magazine - News articles from Washington DC newspaper ] ] is Regina Griggs.


PFOX was founded in 1998, and is headquartered in Fort Belvoir, Virginia. Associates find both secular and faith-based conversion therapy to be valid. PFOX is a signatory organization of Positive Alternatives To Homosexuality (PATH), and has adopted PATH's "Statement of Principles", which states: "We do work to raise awareness of alternatives to living a homosexual life..." [ Positive Alternatives To Homosexuality (PATH)] "Statement of Principles"]

PFOX voiced opposition to "grade-specific sex education and information about HIV/AIDS" on the basis that "the standards are not and would undermine abstinence-only messages."cite web
title=Across The Nation: Washington, D.C., Board of Education Approves Health Education Standards That Include HIV/AIDS Information
publisher=Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation
date=17 December, 2007
url =
] PFOX opposed "legislation to protect transgender individuals from discrimination" with a stated concern that it would give "male cross-dressers access to women's restrooms".cite web
last =Marimow
first =Ann E.
title=Leggett Signs Bill For Protection of Transgender People
publisher=Washington Post
date=22 November, 2007
url =
] cite web"
last =Davis
first =Janel
title=Leggett Signs Transgender Discrimination Ban Into Law, Maryland Community Newspapers Online
date=21 November, 2007
url =

Richard Cohen

Richard A. Cohen, prominently ex-gay, was the president of PFOX for a period of time. [ [ "Richard Cohen’s Vanishing Act… Well Sort Of"] . Retrieved on 04-11-2007.] Cohen later left this role.

After Cohen was interviewed by Jason Jones on the March 19, 2007 episode of "The Daily Show", PFOX systematically removed all references to Cohen from their website. [ [ NARTH and PFOX Quietly Rid Themselves of Richard Cohen (blog entry)] , Ex-Gay Watch, 03-31-2007. Retrieved on 04-07-2007.]


The medical and scientific consensus is that attempts at eliminating same-sex attractions are not effective and are potentially harmful.

The ethics and efficacy of these procedures are rejected by all mainstream medical and mental health associations that have taken a position on the topic. Their stance is that sexual orientation is unchangeable, and that attempts to do so are often damaging to the person's well-being. [ Just the Facts About Sexual Orientation & Youth: A Primer for Principals, Educators and School Personnel ] ] The American Psychiatric Association states that "ethical practitioners refrain from attempts to change individuals' sexual orientation." [ [ Youth in the Crosshairs: The Third Wave of Ex-Gay Activism ] ]

Major organizations that reject conversion therapy include the American Psychiatric Association, the American Psychological Association, the American Counseling Association, the National Association of Social Workers, the American Academy of Pediatrics, the American Association of School Administrators, the American Federation of Teachers, the National Association of School Psychologists, and the National Education Association. [ [ Just the Facts About Sexual Orientation & Youth: A Primer for Principals, Educators and School Personnel] 1999, American Psychological Association] .

In 2005, PFOX was barred from presenting a workshop at the National Parent Teacher Association (PTA) Convention. They have also been denied participation at events held by the National Mental Health Association, the National Education Association, and the American Association of University Women. Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays (PFLAG), which has been an invited guest to the National PTA convention in recent years, has responded to PFOX:

:"PFLAG and others also find the basic premise of PFOX’s rationale confusing. If someone is not gay or bisexual, they are heterosexual. "Since this is the case," says PFLAG’s executive director Jody Huckaby, "PFOX should have no concerns. PFLAG supports safe schools for all sexual orientations - gay, bisexual and heterosexual." [ PFLAG Returns to NPTA Convention] , from PFLAG website ]

ee also

*Richard Cohen


External links

* [ Official website of Parents and Friends of Ex-Gays and Gays]
* [ Mental health group bars PFOX from convention] - Washington Blade newspaper article
* [] - entry on PFOX

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