Personal stories of gender dysphoric young people being led onto a pathway of experimental, irreversible and damaging treatments were heard in Tasmania’s parliament last night.

Tasmanian Director of the Australian Christian Lobby (ACL), Christopher Brohier, said, “Around 100 people attended the Free Speech Australia’s parliamentary forum which was held in response to the highly contested recommendations by the Tasmanian Law Reform Institute (TLRI).

“They gathered to call upon the Tasmanian Government to oppose the TLRI recommendations which, if implemented, would include the following -

  • Parents who urge caution to children who are questioning their gender or sexuality will be deemed to have conducted conversion therapy, thereby breaking the law and subject to penalties.   
  • Despite experts warning that puberty blockers can have dangerous side-effects and that the long-term impacts remain unknown, Clinicians would be required to unquestioningly affirm people, even children, in their preferred gender and treat them accordingly.

“The powerful, yet profoundly concerning stories shared at the forum of young people whose bodies, and lives, have been irreversibly damaged by affirmation therapy provided clear evidence that the TRLI recommendations are uneducated, flawed and must be rejected by the government.

“Children suffering from gender dysphoria deserve the best support Australia has to offer. They should never be made to feel that they need to medically alter their bodies in order to live as their true self. Concerns which have been silenced for years are being proven correct, evidenced by the personal stories heard at the forum.

“The TLRI Report is hopelessly flawed and must be rejected. If the Rockliff Government legislates the TLRI recommendations, they will be willfully ignoring the voices of those who have personal experience of the harm caused by what is being recommended.

“There will be no excuse. All the Tasmanian Government needs to do is look to the UK where 1000 families are expected to join a medical negligence lawsuit against the recently shut-down UK Tavistock Gender Clinic which is accused of recklessly prescribing puberty blockers with harmful side effects and is also alleged to have adopted an 'unquestioning, affirmative approach' to children identifying as transgender.”

The ACL urges the Tasmanian Liberal Government to listen, and to shelve the TLRI report and conduct a proper judicial inquiry before attempting to legislate in this complex area.