California Governor Jerry Brown has now appealed a court injunction that has so far prevented the enforcement of a new law designed to ban gay conversion therapy for children.

The appeal was announced by state Attorney General Kamala Harris and was filed with the US 9th Circuit Court of Appeals on Wednesday.

The court decided on 21 December to block the law that was to take effect on 1 January 2013.

It puts enforcement on hold, pending a decision on its constitutionality.

The law is being fought by a small group of therapist and religious groups who argue it infringes on their right of free speech.

Attorney General Harris asked the court to look at a recent decision by US District Judge Kimberly Mueller that upheld the law.

Last September, campaigners and medical professionals welcomed California Governor Jerry Brown’s decision to ban teenagers from accessing discredited treatments that seek to reject an LGBT identity.

Governor Brown said in a statement that gay “conversion therapy” had “no basis in science or medicine,” and that it would be “relegated to the dustbin of quackery”.