WASHINGTON, D.C., August 8, 2011 (LifeSiteNews.com) - The American Psychological Association (APA) has re-affirmed its support for same-sex “marriage” for the eighth consecutive year, this time with a more strongly-worded statement.

On the eve of this year’s annual convention, the association’s policymaking body supported same-sex “marriage” unanimously in a 157-0 vote.

The APA has backed “marriage” for homosexual couples since 2004, and marriage-like benefits since 1997, and now calls itself “a strong advocate for full equal rights for LGBT people for nearly 35 years.”

This year’s resolution is the first new wording of the association’s position since 2004, and includes stronger support for same-sex “marriage” by both asserting the possibility of long-term gay relationships as well as criticizing the stress that traditional marriage campaigns cause gays.

One APA official indicated that the recent spread of gay “marriage” in America, most notably in New York last month, has made the association’s public support for normalizing same-sex “marriage” more bold.

“Now as the country has really begun to have experience with gay marriage, our position is much clearer and more straightforward — that marriage equity is the policy that the country should be moving toward,” says Clinton Anderson, director of APA’s Office on Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Concerns.

The position paper now asserts that “many gay men and lesbians, like their heterosexual counterparts, desire to form stable, long-lasting and committed intimate relationships and are successful in doing so,” and that campaigns to uphold traditional marriage are “a significant source of stress” to homosexuals.

Homosexuality was declassified as a mental disorder in 1973 in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, the standard criteria for classification of mental illness, after years of lobbying by gay rights groups.

Dr. Robert Spitzer, who was in charge of the DSM change, reversed his position on therapy for homosexuals nearly 30 years later to support sexual reorientation therapy based on his own research.