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RESPONSE: 7NEWS SPOTLIGHT PROGRAM “DE-TRANSITIONING”

I have been contacted by a number of people distressed by the appalling 7News Spotlight program “De-Transitioning” which aired on the 4th of September.

The Greens reaffirm our support for safe and inclusive health care for LGBTQIA+ people across NSW, and that must include gender-affirming care. There is significant research that shows that gender-affirming care is medically necessary care that can be life-saving.

This program was one-sided, featuring 3 people who regret medical treatment to affirm a different gender identity, and none who have experienced the life-saving benefits of gender-affirming care. It featured images used without consent of transgender individuals who do not regret their transition (7News has now apologised for this). It also included comments from individual practitioners that are incorrect, without any fact-checking or reply from clinicians who provide gender-affirming care.

7News not only acknowledged but seemed to revel in the knowledge that many people would take issue with this program by advertising it as “the most controversial Spotlight story this year”.

Trans and gender diverse young people should not be used as a political football by people seeking to drive controversy, division or hate.

We must acknowledge the real and valid trauma experienced by those who regret their treatment. They must be supported. But we must also recognise that the rates of regret for people who access medical support for gender affirmation is lower than the rates of regret experienced on average for medical and surgical treatments - largely because of the already very cautious approach of practitioners.

As a GP who provided gender-affirming care in Albury-Wodonga until my election to Parliament, I have seen first-hand the breadth and importance of gender-affirming care, and the joy and validation that it can enable. The experiences of the small number of individuals who regret their decision should not be weaponised to restrict access for others to the care that they need.

I am furious about the harm caused to trans and gender diverse people, their families and health practitioners who support them caused by 7News in their flagrant pursuit of controversy. The Greens will continue to stand with you to be safe, affirmed, supported, and empowered across all of NSW.

- Dr Amanda Cohn, Member of the NSW Legislative Council and Greens NSW LGBTQIA+ spokesperson

 

If you require support, you can contact:
  • QLife for phone or webchat peer support from 3pm-midnight for LGBTQIA+ people on 1800 184 527 or qlife.org.au
  • Lifeline for telephone crisis support on 13 11 14 or text 0477 131 114

For more information about gender-affirming care, go to https://www.transhub.org.au/
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