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Tavistock Gender Clinic to be Sued by 1,000 Families

Following news that the Tavistock ‘transgender’ clinic will be closing down, it has now emerged that up to 1,000 families plan to sue the discredited NHS trust. The claim is that personnel at the Tavistock clinic acted with gross negligence by rushing teenagers into irreversible, life-altering decisions in response to the mere insistence by young patients that they had been “born in the wrong body.”

For some time now, the Tavistock clinic has been the one specialist institution providing services for people, including children, who are confused about their gender identity. Last month, it lost all credibility after a damning external report published by the consultant paediatrician Dr. Hilary Cass. Her review is still ongoing, but the decision to shut down Tavistock was particularly motivated by Cass’s interim finding that several of the clinic’s doctors had felt “pressured to adopt an unquestioning approach” while treating adolescents with gender dysphoria. The report added: 

This is at odds with the standard process of clinical assessment and diagnosis that they have been trained to undertake in all other clinical encounters. 

The clinic will be fully abolished by the spring of 2023. For many parents anxious about the socially contagious nature of the transgender phenomenon among children, as well as the destructive impact such confusion has on the health of developing young minds, the end of Tavistock and its replacement by facilities instructed to pursue more “holistic” forms of treatment will come as good news.

However, there are plenty of other parents for whom the damage is already done. As such, according to the Times, lawsuits are being prepared by up to 1,000 aggrieved families who allege that the Tavistock clinic indulged the ill-considered claims of vulnerable children, misdiagnosed their actual conditions, and sent them down a damaging, irreversible medical route. 

Tom Goodhead, chief executive of the law firm pursuing the action, gave the following comment to the Times

Children and young adolescents were rushed into treatment without the appropriate therapy and involvement of the right clinicians, meaning that they were misdiagnosed and started on a treatment pathway that was not right for them.

These children have suffered life-changing and, in some cases, irreversible effects of the treatment they received.

Some of the “treatments” in question have included the reckless prescription of puberty blockers with potentially damaging side effects. According to Cass’s report, these experimental treatments may have served “temporarily or permanently” to disrupt the development of young brains. The “unquestioning” haste with which the claims of young patients were affirmed is also an important grievance at the very heart of Goodhead’s legal action.

The lawsuit is due to be referred to the High Court in London within the next six months.

Harrison Pitt is a writer for The European Conservative. Based in the UK, he has also been published in The Spectator, Quillette, Spiked-Online, The Critic, and others.