Tag Archives: NHS

Acid attacks in the UK now so widespread that public need training in helping victims, warn doctors

acid attack victim

Southampton acid attack victim in September 2015/BBC photo

Gee, I wonder why acid attacks are on the rise…

From Telegraph via Yahoo: Acid attacks are now so prevalent that the public needs to be trained in helping victims, the Royal College of Emergency Medicine (RCEM) has said. In London alone, the number of attacks rocketed from 261 in 2015, to 454 last year, an increase of 73 per cent.

Doctors at the RCEM and Barts Health NHS Trust say that bystanders who come to the aid of victims should be taught to quickly remove contaminated clothing and wash off the acid with copious amounts of water, which can lessen scarring and the need for plastic surgery.

They also called for legislation to make the carrying of corrosive substances in the street illegal.

“The number of high profile “acid” attacks has been increasing in recent years, especially in London,” said Johann Grundlingh consultant emergency physician at Barts Health Trust, writing in the British Medical Journal (BMJ).

“The attacks, involving a range of corrosive substances, have brought into sharp focus the need for clinicians, law enforcement officers, and our lawmakers to find ways to deal with this latest menace on our streets. The assailants’ intention is not to kill, but to maim and disfigure. Corrosive substances now seem to be a replacement for carrying knives.”

“Bystanders who come to the aid of the victim of an attack can have an important role in minimising further injury.”

Carrying corrosive substances is currently legal with no restrictions on volume or strength, although the government is considering changing the law.

In 2002, after similar attacks, Bangladesh banned the open sale of acid and imposed stringent punishment of offenders, which saw the number of attacks fall by 15-20 per cent a year.

India and Cambodia have also implemented legislation to combat acid attacks but have yet to introduce laws restricting the ease and availability of acid.

Last month two teenage boys were arrested following six acid attacks in the streets of London in a 72 minute spree.  Just days before a man was arrested for flinging acid into the face of an aspiring model in the capital.

Although acid attacks are rarely deadly, victims are often left scarred, blinded and heavily traumatised.

The substance used is usually sulphuric or nitric acid and, unlike most other countries, in the UK men are more likely to be victims than women. Since police clamped down on knife crime, gang members frequently conceal acid in water bottles.

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Revealed: 800 children in England as young as 10 have been given sex change drugs

possibly go wrong

Because feeeeeelings.

From Daily Mail: More than 800 children in England – some as young as ten – are being given controversial drugs to help them change gender. The NHS treatment, which halts the onset of adulthood, is aimed at young people who believe they are trapped in the wrong body.

Powerful monthly hormone injections stop the development of sex organs, breasts and body hair, making it easier for doctors to carry out sex-swap surgery later.

Until now it was thought that just a handful of children and teenagers were receiving the injections, known as ‘puberty-blockers’.

Teenager Llyr Jones has been taking puberty-blocking drugs for the past six months. The 17-year-old told how she was desperate to be prescribed the injections to end the agony she was going through as her body began to change into that of an adult man.

Llyr, from Aberystwyth in Mid-Wales, said if the physical transformations that came with puberty had been allowed to continue, she would have been pushed to take her own life. ‘In all honesty, if I hadn’t been allowed to be on the blockers and start my transition, I’m sure I wouldn’t be here now,’ she said.

The worst thing was starting to grow body hair. It felt like something was happening that wasn’t me – I was so uncomfortable. Some days were worse than others when I would catch a glimpse of my body in the mirror and I’d collapse on the bathroom floor for hours, frozen with distress.’

Llyr, who was born male, started living as a girl when she was 15 years old. Previously she had suppressed her desire to become female because of the bullying she endured for ‘being different’ in the small Welsh farming community she grew up in. ‘I didn’t want to give my bullies yet another reason to go after me,’ she said.

Llyr finally found relief in January last year when she was sent to London’s Tavistock gender identity clinic, which has seen a dramatic increase in referrals – from 94 in 2009/10 to almost 2,000 last year.

After being psychologically assessed and diagnosed with gender dysphoria, she was then sent in November for medical treatment at University College Hospital in London. There she underwent a series of health checks, including blood tests and bone scans, before doctors finally prescribed the puberty-blockers that Llyr now believes saved her life.

‘I thought thank God, because I knew they were stopping the puberty,’ she said.

Since starting the blockers, Llyr said she has become more confident and at ease with her body. The next stage, she says, will be surgery, which can happen legally from the age of 18. She thinks the operations are unlikely before she is 19 because of the current waiting lists.

Dressed fashionably in a colourful crop top and shiny black trousers, a carefree Llyr declared: ‘I’m just in such a great place now because I know after everything I’ve been through, I’m on the right track.’

But The Mail on Sunday can reveal that more than 600 young people are undergoing treatment at the Gender Identity Development Service clinic at University College Hospital in London, and a further 200 at a clinic in Leeds. The MoS has been told that 230 of those 800 are under the age of 14.

The huge growth in the number of youngsters being prescribed the drugs came after the NHS scrapped the age limit in 2014, which was previously 16. Now doctors can give the injections to children from the very early stages of puberty – meaning that in some cases, ten-year-olds are receiving them.

The MoS revelation comes a week after the Government announced plans to allow adults to legally change their sex without a medical diagnosis. In future, individuals who want to change gender are expected to simply make a statutory declaration that they intend to live in the sex they have transitioned to until death.

Mary Douglas, a spokeswoman for Grassroots Conservatives campaign group, said: ‘Adolescence is the age when you’re in a turmoil because you’re trying to work out who you are and gender is a big part of that. So to introduce such powerful medication into that is unwise. This drastic notion that we should change our gender should be a last resort. Caution needs to be the watchword for everyone engaged in this, including doctors.’

Stephanie Davies-Arai, of Transgender Trend, a parent group concerned about the rise of children identifying as the opposite sex, added: ‘These kids are not old enough to make life-changing decisions that will affect them for the rest of their lives. It’s unethical to pursue this line of treatment with children who cannot possibly understand what they’re doing.’

Professor Gary Butler, the lead clinician for the gender identity service in London and Leeds, revealed how many youngsters are now taking puberty-blockers. He defended the use of the drugs and said critics did not appreciate the distress puberty can cause transgender young people or how much ‘relief’ the blockers can give to these patients and their families.

However, other medical experts have questioned the safety of the treatment, warning that little is known about its long-term mental, psychological and physical effects.

Last month three top US doctors, Professors Paul Hruz, Paul McHugh and Lawrence Mayer, published a highly critical report on the use of puberty-blockers to treat gender dysphoria. Writing in American academic journal The New Atlantis, they warned that the safety of this ‘experimental’ treatment was ‘unsupported by rigorous scientific evidence’.

They further argued that the use of such drugs may be driving children to ‘persist in identifying as transgender’. Research shows that the vast majority of under-16s who are troubled about their gender do not go on to take the drastic step of surgery. Meanwhile, the three professors point to another study from a Dutch clinic – where all the adolescents prescribed puberty blockers had gone ahead with gender-reassignment surgery – as evidence that the drugs can ‘solidify’ patients’ feelings they were born the wrong biological sex.

Read the rest of the story here.

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High Court denies parents of Charlie Gard the right to determine treatment for the last days of his life

charlie gard and family

Statism alive and well in the UK.

From Daily Mail: A High Court judge has given Charlie Gard’s parents until midday tomorrow to reach an agreement with Great Ormond Street Hospital on arrangements for the end of his life.

Mr. Justice Francis said the 11-month-old will be transferred to a hospice where his ventilation tube will be removed if doctors and his parents fail to reach a compromise about how he should be cared for in his final moments.

Charlie’s parents Connie Yates and Chris Gard had said it was their final wish to take him home to ‘slip away’ in his cot before his first birthday.

Both his parents and doctors have now conceded that he should move to a hospice – but continue to disagree over the detail of care plans. Miss Yates and Mr. Gard wanted to spend a week at a hospice with Charlie before he died.

But Great Ormond Street bosses said they were not satisfied that a properly-qualified specialist would be in control under the parents’ plan, and said life-support treatment should end shortly after Charlie arrived at a hospice.

A family friend said the pair, ‘will be devastated they have not been granted their final wishes as parents.’  

Charlie is only expected to spend a few hours in a hospice because they are not licensed to be able to look after him for more than a few hours once the ventilator is taken off.

Miss Yates was in court today wearing a heart-shaped pendant engraved with ‘Charlie’ while Mr. Gard continued the vigil at their son’s bedside.   Before the judge returned to court, Miss Yates sobbed and said: ‘I don’t want to be in the same room as him.’ 

Apparently referring to the lawyers for the hospital, she added: ‘I hope you are happy with yourself. How can you do that? What if it was your child?’ before running out of court crying. 

On Monday, Miss Yates, 31, and Mr. Gard, 33, reduced the High Court to tears by making the agonising decision to let Charlie die after an eight-month legal battle. 

They accepted their 11-month-old, who has mitochondrial disease, was now beyond hope of any cure – which they blamed on ‘a lot of wasted time’ by medics – and would not live to see his first birthday on Friday next week.

But their plan to take Charlie home, give him baths and let him sleep in his cot before saying their final goodbyes on Monday next week were dashed by the hospital.

Great Ormond Street said he should go to a hospice – or stay with them – because his ventilator won’t fit through the front door and doctors fear he could suffer pain or a ‘distressing or disordered death’.

A family friend said: ‘The hospital have set the bar so high that in terms of clinical team for Charlie’s end of life nothing seemed good enough for gosh. The reality is Charlie is very stable, not in pain and rarely needs a doctor. It is therefore difficult to understand why Charlie could not die at home.

‘All he needs is a ventilator which pumps room air into his lungs. It is extraordinarily sad that there’s been so much fuss about him dying at home.  Connie and Chris have conceded a hospice but it was not their first choice. They will be devastated they have not been granted their final wishes as parents.’ 

Read the rest of this distressing story here.

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British “man” makes history by giving birth to girl

hayden cross

Call it “history” and be “proud” if you want, Hayden.  That doesn’t mean you can change the scientific reality of biology.

From The Sun: Proud Hayden Cross has made history by becoming the first British man to give birth. The 21-year-old, said of daughter Trinity-Leigh: “She’s my angel.”

Hayden, born Paige, gave birth by caesarean. He put his transition on hold to fall pregnant by a sperm donor.

Cradling his daughter the beaming parent said: “She’s perfect in every way.”

And he told The Sun: “She is so good. I’m so lucky.”

Following the birth Hayden now plans to return to complete his gender realignment as soon as possible.

The proud father was born a girl, Paige, 21 years ago. He has been living legally as a man for more than three years and taking male ­hormones, giving him facial hair and a deep voice. The cost of gender reassignment is £29,000 per patient, including support and surgery.

But Hayden was also desperate to have a baby. Before completing his transition he asked the NHS to freeze his eggs in a £4,000 process in the hope he might have children years later. But health chiefs refused.

When The Sun on Sunday exclusively revealed his pregnancy in January, Hayden, from Gloucester, said: “I faced the prospect of not becoming the man I’m supposed to be, physically, or a dad. So I didn’t feel like I had any choice but to have a baby now then get back to transitioning.

“In September I got pregnant by a sperm donation. I found the donor on the internet. I looked on Facebook for a group and found one — it’s been shut down now. I didn’t have to pay. The man came to my house, he passed me the sperm in a pot and I did it via a syringe.”

Hayden Cross has no contact with the child’s biological dad and does not know his name.

He said at the time: “I found I was pregnant two weeks after the sperm was inserted. It was mixed emotions. I was happy but I also knew it would be backtracking on my transition. It’s like I have given myself one thing, but taken away something else.

It’s a very female thing to carry a baby and it goes against everything I feel in my body. I was finally starting to become myself and become a man physically — but now my body is going in the opposite direction.”

Hayden’s mum also gave birth to a boy last month.

Hayden, who used to work for Asda and in a clothes shop, aims to find a job once the baby is aged one. The Man United fan told us in January: “I want the baby to have the best of everything. I will be the greatest dad.”

He insisted: “I will go back to Asda or something. I will work anywhere. I’ll put the baby in childcare so I can provide for it. I want to save lots of money so I can send the baby to private school.”

“I don’t mind what the kid does when older. As long as they are happy and respectful, I don’t care. I just want to make sure that they have the best opportunities in life. I will be proud no matter what.”

But he ruled out breastfeeding, saying: “I hate my boobs. I want to have the child and get back to full transitioning.”

Hayden later told Lorraine Kelly on her ITV show: “I’ve had some good reactions and bad ones. I’ve had death threats, people threatening to beat me up. But a lot of ­people don’t really understand the situation. I want them to be more aware.”

Read the rest of the story here.

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This is socialized medicine: UK parents not allowed to take their son to the US for treatment

charlie gard and family

The parents must let their child “die with dignity.”

From Daily Mail: Members of Charlie Gard’s army of supporters across the globe have expressed their grief as his parents prepare for his life support to be turned off today (Friday).

People all over the world have been using the hashtag #JeSuisCharlieGard’ to celebrate the ten-month-old’s life before it is ended by his doctors later.

Connie Yates and Chris Gard are at their son’s bedside in Great Ormond Street Hospital today as he enters his final hours.

But they continue to receive unwavering support from thousands who donated £1.4million towards the treatment denied to him. 

His parents are believed to be Catholic and their unwell son was photographed recently clutching a St. Jude pendant – the patron saint of lost causes.

As a result his plight has had mass press coverage in Italy and even reached the Vatican where Pope Francis was asked to pray for Charlie.  Archbishop Vincenzo Paglia, head of the Pope’s Pontifical Academy for Life was quoted as saying: ‘We should never act with the deliberate intention to end a human life, including the removal of nutrition and hydration, so that death might be achieved’.

Catholic groups across called the decision to end Charlie’s care ‘heartbreaking’ and ‘draconian’ with vigils held for the little British boy in various Italian cities last night.

And in Britain others have taken to Twitter to vent their anger at Great Ormond Street with some promising to end their charitable donations over their treatment of Charlie. 

Connie Yates and Chris Gard told MailOnline yesterday that his ‘heartless’ doctors who have refused to let him come home to die today.

The couple’s ‘final wish’ for Charlie has been blocked and his mother Connie said in a video for MailOnline: ‘We promised our little boy every single day that we would take him home’.

Mr. Gard added: ‘We want to give him a bath at home, put him in a cot which he has never slept in but we are now being denied that. We know what day our son is going to die but don’t get a say in how that will happen.’

They have also released a heartbreaking photograph of them lying with Charlie between them and said they were ‘spending our last precious hours with our baby boy’.

And they also the so-called ‘Charlie’s Army’ who donated £1.4million for the US treatment being denied to him and told them: ‘Charlie will die tomorrow knowing that he was loved by thousands – thank you to everyone for all your support’.

The couple have also accused Great Ormond Street of trying to ‘rush’ his death despite promises they would have the time they needed to say goodbye to their only son.  

Connie Yates and Chris Gard had battled to take their son, who has a rare genetic condition, to undergo experimental treatment in the US. But earlier this week they reached the very end of their legal battle after the European Court of Human Rights backed British doctors who said it would be kinder to let the ten month old die. 

In a heartbreaking video taken in the hospital room where they have lived since their son was admitted to hospital last year, the couple open their hearts speaking for the first time since they were told the European Court verdict.

Ms. Yates said:  ‘We’ve been talking about what palliative care meant. One option was to let Charlie go home to die. We chose to take Charlie home to die. That is our last wish. We promised our little boy every single day that we would take him home.’

His father Chris, 32, said: ‘Our parental rights have been stripped away. We can’t even take our own son home to die. We’ve been denied that. Our final wish if it all went against us can we take our little boy home to die and we are not allowed. They even said no to a hospice.

The couple, who have previously lost battles in the High Court, Court of Appeal and Supreme Court, claim they also asked doctors to allow them a final weekend with Charlie but say this request has been denied. ‘We begged them to give us the weekend,’ Ms Yates said, ‘Friends and family wanted to come and see Charlie for the last time. But now there isn’t even time for that. Doctors said they would not rush to turn off his ventilator but we are being rushed. Not only are we not allowed to take our son to an expert hospital to save his life, we also can’t choose how or when our son dies.

The couple say they also offered to pay privately for their son to be transported on a mobile ventilator to their flat in Bedfond, southwest London, in order to spend a few last precious hours with him.

Connie Yates, 31, has indicated that the £1.3m raised for Charlie will be used to save other children and a foundation could be set up in his name.  Miss Yates said in April: ‘A few people have asked us what we’ll do if we don’t win the court case.  We have thought long and hard about it and we would set up a charity for mitochondrial depletion syndromes (there are others that are more common than Charlie’s specific gene)’, she said in a statement which was posted on the website but has now been taken down.

‘We’d like to save other babies and children because these medications have been proven to work and we honestly have so much belief in them. If Charlie doesn’t get this chance, we will make sure that other innocent babies and children will be saved. We would like some of it to go to research at the specific hospital that is willing to treat Charlie, and the rest will be available to help other families to get the medication that their children desperately need. We hope that you can all support us in making treatments available so that nobody else ever has to go through what we have.

GoFundMe said officials would also have discussions with Charlie’s parents about what would happen to money raised for treatment.

But Connie said: ‘Even though we offered to pay for him to be transported back home, doctors have now told us he must die in hospital. We offered to pay for transport privately but that’s not an option.’

A spokesperson for Great Ormond Street Hospital said: ‘As with all of our patients, we are not able to and nor will we discuss these specific details of care. This is a very distressing situation for Charlie’s parents and all the staff involved and our focus remains with them.’

Read the rest of the story here.

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Advisers in Britain who help train teachers say using sex specific terms in the classroom is unfair to transgenders

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From Daily Mail: Children as young as seven are to be taught in schools to stop using the terms ‘boys’ and ‘girls’ – in case they discriminate against transgender pupils.

A guidebook for teachers, parents and pupils to be sent to schools around Britain advises against using language that suggests there are only two genders. It also condemns saying ‘ladies’ and ‘gents’.

Instead the book – described as ‘damaging’ by critics – offers a bewildering array of alternative terms to describe gender and sexuality. Children who think of themselves as being the gender with which they were born are described as ‘cisgender’. Other terms offered include ‘panromantic’, ‘intersex’ and ‘genderqueer’.

Title: Can I Tell You About Gender Diversity? Author: CJ Atkinson Release date: 19/01/2017 Price: £8.99 Publisher: Jessica Kingsley Publishers

Title: Can I Tell You About Gender Diversity?
Author: CJ Atkinson
Release date: 19/01/2017 Price: £8.99
Publisher: Jessica Kingsley Publishers

The book – Can I Tell You About Gender Diversity? – also features the use of hormone blockers by a fictional 12-year-old ‘transitioning’ from female to male in order to stop the onset of puberty. The treatment is controversially available to children on the NHS, as first revealed by The Mail on Sunday.

Billed by the publishers as ‘the first book to explain medical transitioning for children aged seven and above’, it is distributed by Educate & Celebrate, a Government-funded body that goes into primary and secondary schools to give lessons on ‘gender diversity.’

The organisation received £200,000 of taxpayer-funding from former Education Secretary Nicky Morgan and is endorsed by Ofsted. Earlier this year, the watchdog described as ‘innovative and visionary’ their work educating staff and children on gender and sexuality.

But politicians and leading religious figures last night lambasted the advice to stop saying boys and girls as ‘damaging’.

The book follows Kit, a 12-year-old who is transitioning from female to male, and features illustrations that may appeal to young readers, including one of a ‘gender-neutral’ unicorn whose genitals are masked with a star. A key passage from the book advises that the use of ‘boys’ and ‘girls’ excludes transgender children – and reinforces the idea that there are behavioural differences between the sexes.

unicorn

Former Tory Party chairman Lord Tebbit said: ‘I think it is damaging to children to introduce uncertainty into their minds.’

Sir Anthony Seldon, the former Master of Wellington College, said: ‘We have to respect the feelings of everybody, including teachers and parents who want traditional modes followed.‘ And the Bishop of Chester, the Right Reverend Peter Forster, added: ‘This is likely to sow more confusion than clarity.’

As an alternative to using the terms ‘boys’ or ‘girls’, the book by C.J. Atkinson – a poet, academic and ‘trans advocate’ – suggests: ‘It may instead be preferable to group students into classes, or houses, or pupils.’ In another part of the book, Kit talks about his fictional school, explaining that when children in his class were split into groups they were divided by numbers or heights. Kit says: ‘This meant that when we were asked to do something, I didn’t feel that I was weird or different.’

Other labels in the book include ‘transman’, which describes a man who was born female but who identifies as male; ‘transwoman’, which indicates the opposite; and ‘panromantic’ – someone who has a ‘romantic attraction towards people of all gender identities’.

The book will be released by publishers Jessica Kingsley next month. Educate & Celebrate, which holds hundreds of workshops in schools, will send copies to the 120 ‘best practice’ schools with which it works. It expects hundreds more head teachers to buy the book.

Educate & Celebrate Founder Elly Barnes

Educate & Celebrate Founder Elly Barnes

Founder Elly Barnes, who was awarded the OBE for her contribution to education, equality and diversity, said the book was ‘much-needed’. She added: ‘Not everyone identifies as male or female – that is fact.’

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BBC targets children to promote the transgender propaganda

transgender-propaganda

From Daily Mail: The BBC has been accused of acting recklessly after targeting children as young as six with a programme about a schoolboy who takes sex-change drugs.

Parents are angry that the show, available on the CBBC website, features a transgender storyline inappropriate for their children.

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And concerned campaigners said it could ‘sow the seeds of confusion’ in young minds. The programme, Just A Girl, depicts an 11-year-old’s struggle to get hormones that stunt puberty, making it easier to have sex-change surgery in the future.

One mother, writing on the Mumsnet website, said her daughter had become worried after seeing the video. She said her girl, who likes wearing boys’ clothes and playing football, had ‘asked me, anxiously, if that means she was a boy’.

Tory MP Peter Bone said: ‘It beggars belief that the BBC is making this programme freely available to children as young as six. I entirely share the anger of parents who just want to let children be children.

‘It is completely inappropriate for such material to be on the CBBC website and I shall be writing to BBC bosses to demand they take it down as soon as possible.’

Former Culture Secretary Maria Miller voiced her concerns over the BBC tackling the subject in ‘an age-appropriate way’, saying such issues should be raised ‘where children can have support from parents’.

And Tory MP Julian Brazier said: ‘This programme is very disappointing and inappropriate. Children are very impressionable and this is going to confuse and worry them.

Family campaigner Norman Wells said: ‘It is irresponsible of the BBC to introduce impressionable children as young as six to the idea that they can choose to be something other than their biological sex.’

Just A Girl is the fictional video diary of a child who calls herself ‘Amy’ and dresses as a girl. It is hosted on the CBBC website, aimed at children aged between six and 12.

In the half-hour programme, Amy – played by an actress – reveals she was born a boy called Ben but has already started using puberty-halting drugs.

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Such hypothalamic blockers provoked a furore two years ago when The Mail on Sunday revealed an NHS clinic was willing to give them to children as young as nine.

Critics cited research claiming that most teenagers confused about their gender never go through with surgery, with many realising they are gay. The BBC row comes amid growing controversy over gender issues, fuelled by a number of high-profile cases.

In one, a Christian couple were threatened with having their 14-year-old daughter taken away because they oppose her plans to become a boy. In another, a seven-year-old boy was ordered to be removed from his mother’s care as ‘she was raising him as female’, causing him ‘a great deal of emotional harm’.

In Just A Girl, Amy says: ‘When I was born, Mum said Dad was so pleased that he had a boy to take to the football. But Mum knew I was different. She realised early on that I was born in the wrong body.’

She adds: ‘My Mum supported me when I did a PowerPoint presentation to my class about transitioning and that I wasn’t going to come to school in boys’ clothes any more, but girls’ clothes. I wasn’t Ben, I was Amy.’

Later Amy is shown telling a friend, Josh – a boy who wants to be recognised as a girl – that she is on hormone blockers, saying it took ‘ages’ to get them after ‘loads of tests and talks at the clinic’. ‘Once they realised I was trans for real, [I] got them,’ she says. In another entry, Amy tells viewers she has developed a crush on a boy called Liam, but confides: ‘Liam thinks I’m just a girl, but I’m not. I’m trans. And what’s he going to say if he finds out? Stop being my friend? Why? I’m still me, aren’t I?’

bbc-transgender-show2

Child psychotherapist Dr. Dilys Daws said the programme could confuse children. She said that, while it was natural for youngsters to wonder what it would be like to be the opposite sex, the BBC was irresponsible to feature the ‘extreme’ step of gender change for six-year-olds because they were too young to grapple with such issues.

The programme generated hundreds of comments on Mumsnet. One mother, who said her seven-year-old had watched the show, asked: ‘Am I being unreasonable to think this is an inappropriate topic for a young age group?’

Another replied: ‘Don’t think this is remotely suitable for a seven-year-old. To start suggesting that children can be transgender when they’re far too young to actually have a gender is reckless and damaging. A small boy who is told that he can become a girl may take this as meaning that sex changes are possible, that sometime in the future he’ll wake up with a girl’s body.’

Another user added: ‘I don’t think hormone therapy should be normalised any more than 12-year-olds drinking or doing recreational drugs should be normalised.’

Other critics slammed the BBC. Mr Wells, director of the Family Education Trust, said: ‘The more we promote the idea that a boy can be born into a girl’s body and a girl can be born into a boy’s body, and that drugs and surgery can put things right, the more children will become utterly confused. Respecting and preserving a child’s birth sex should be seen as a child protection issue.

But some parents on Mumsnet were more positive. One wrote: ‘I don’t believe there is “too young” for stuff like this. The earlier you teach your children that everyone is different and that nobody is “normal” the better.’

Dr .Polly Carmichael, a clinical psychologist specialising in transgender children, said: ‘Raising awareness of these issues is the best way to challenge stigma and discrimination associated with identity issues. Programmes like Just A Girl can contribute to a healthy and informed public discussion.

The BBC said: ‘Just A Girl is about a fictional transgender character trying to make sense of the world, deal with bullying and work out how to keep her friends, which are universal themes that many children relate to, and which has had a positive response from our audience. CBBC aims to reflect true life, providing content that mirrors the lives of as many UK children as possible.

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