Specialist gender dysphoria services for children and young people

Specialist gender dysphoria services for children and young people

BAGIS Statement re: Court of Appeal Ruling 17th September 2021

The BAGIS stands by and welcome the clarity provided by the Court of Appeal’s decision to overturn the High Court judgment that children and young people with gender dysphoria may not be able to consent to puberty blockers. The appeal court judges stressed that it was for the clinicians rather than the courts to decide on the capacity of under 16 year olds to consent to treatment, and that it was ‘inappropriate’ for the High Court to have issued the guidance. The BAGIS holds in the highest regard the competence and expertise of those specialist gender clinicians working with trans youth and their families across the British Isles.

BAGIS Statement re: Judicial Review 1st December 2020

The British Association of Gender Identity Specialists council wishes to express disappointment in the legal judgment which denies the competence and capacity of young transgender people under 18 years of age to consent to hormonal intervention as part of their gender development. It makes a distinction between the self-understanding, bodily autonomy and rights of young trans people and the self-understanding, bodily autonomy and rights of young people who are not transgender. The verdict seems to invalidate the lived experience of trans people and privileges a cisgender outcome over a transgender outcome. The BAGIS is opposed to such discrimination, whenever and wherever it arises.

The health and wellbeing of trans people is of the highest priority to the BAGIS. We are deeply concerned about the effect the judgement may have on trans people and their lives. The Council has already been made aware of the considerable psychological distress expressed by members of trans youth communities which has arisen as a direct result of the judgement. We implore the government through NHS England and NHS Wales to commit to making support available to children and young people to manage their distress about the outcome of this ruling.

We await further information regarding appeal of the Judicial Review, and the impact the recent verdict will have on clinical practice and young trans people. In the meantime, the BAGIS council continues to hold clinicians working in the field of trans healthcare across the British Isles in the highest regard and has every confidence in the competence of those specialists working with trans youth. In particular, we wish to express our solidarity and support for those specialists working with trans youth in England and Wales at an extremely challenging time.