At last, the truth is out there — and those of us who have long suffered for daring to warn something was seriously wrong at the charity Mermaids have been vindicated.
It became clear to me as far back as 2016 that two charities, Stonewall and Mermaids, were closely involved in the sudden rise in the number of young people asking for treatment for what was described as ‘gender dysphoria’. They wanted to change their sex.
These young patients were often treated by the NHS Gender Identity Development Service (GIDS) at London’s Tavistock Clinic.
It has now been closed after a devastating report accused clinicians and therapists of recommending drastic treatments to children — such as puberty blockers, often the first step on the road to surgery.
Mermaids, whose chief executive was Susie Green, is a UK charity that ‘supports transgender, nonbinary and gender-diverse children, young people and their families’.
Susie Green (pictured) was the chief executive of Mermaids, a UK charity that ‘supports transgender, nonbinary and gender-diverse children, young people and their families’
Protests supposedly protecting trans youth rights have erupted in London and elsewhere, but Jenni has long been sceptical about the activism at the charity Mermaids
From 2016 it was no secret that Mrs Green, a woman with no medical qualifications but a determined ideology, had gained huge power at the Tavistock.
Was she a suitable candidate to influence practice at an experimental NHS clinic? She may be passionate about her cause but she is not a medical professional.
She is an activist who took her own child to the U.S. for puberty blockers at the age of 12. At the age of 16, he underwent radical surgery in Thailand and is now known as a girl called Jackie.
I was concerned, as were many others who sought to learn more about the relationship between Mermaids, Susie Green and the controversial treatment at the Tavistock.
And that is where the problems started. Because the existence of any close partnership was frequently denied.
Emails between Mrs Green and the clinic’s director, Dr Polly Carmichael, simply did not exist, we were told, nor would the Tavistock release details of their meetings between 2014 and 2018.
Now, however, a threat of court action from the Information Commissioner’s Office has miraculously revealed 322 pages of communications between the two women, demonstrating how the Tavistock was in thrall to activists. The revelations in the emails are deeply troubling.
Mrs Green personally made referrals to GIDS even if a child’s GP had repeatedly refused to do so. Her involvement in the service itself was extensive. She advised on trials designed to inform how young patients were treated.
Having long suffered for daring to warn something was seriously wrong at the charity Mermaids, Jenni feels vindicated
Along with other advisers, she attended a meeting to redraft NHS guidance for transitioning children. I’m afraid I’d rather my medical decisions were made by experts, not activists.
The new NHS guidance, issued in 2016, placed greater emphasis on medical treatment for children. Puberty blockers were to be considered for those under the age of 12, if they were in established puberty.
Puberty blockers were at the time said to be reversible. The NHS no longer says this is the case. Other European countries have banned them because their long-term effects are not known.
Two years later, Dr Carmichael invited Mermaids to take part in a study, begun in 2019, which looked at the development of gender identity between the ages of three and 14.
I have to wonder: did Mrs Green want young children to be given such treatment, and on what medical basis?
At one point, she asked in an email whether the Tavistock would treat children whose parents had obtained hormone blockers privately, because the drugs were then only available to those aged 16 and up on the NHS.
Susie Green is now employed by a company called Gender GP, which sells such drugs online.
Trans children make billions of dollars for surgeons and drug companies in the U.S. Many will be on lifelong medication. Sometimes it begins as young as four.
The Tavistock Centre where young patients were often treated by the NHS Gender Identity Development Service (GIDS) has now closed
Whatever you may think of Mrs Green, I do not think she should have been allowed anywhere near NHS decision-making.
How could qualified doctors have allowed her to have such influence over prescribing policy for vulnerable children?
More broadly, how many of the ever-rising number of children claiming they were ‘born into the wrong body’ were fed information by Mermaids that was biased and incorrect?
You don’t need to be a specialist to know that teenagers, particularly girls, may hate their changing bodies, but most grow out of it. Aged 12, I cut my hair short, wore only dungarees, wanted to be called Roberta, shortened to Bobby.
My mum told me not to be so daft. She was right and I’ve been proud to be a woman ever since.
How did Susie Green, heading up what was effectively a lobby group, receive hundreds of thousands in lottery funding and grants? I and so many others have suffered from the madness created by such activists.
Those of us who have insisted you can change your gender but not your sex, who have said we offer sympathy and respect to trans men and women but won’t have them call themselves ‘real’ men and women.
We have lost jobs, friends, reputations. We’ve been dubbed Terfs —transphobes — and been threatened with violence and death.
But that’s nothing compared to the suffering of so many children.
Keira Bell brought our attention to the horror of her transition, which began with puberty blockers given by GIDS when she was 16.
She took the Tavistock to court and revealed her sad story, how GIDS’ ‘despicable’ decision to prescribe blockers quickly rather than explore what she calls a ‘mental health crisis’ put her on the path to a double mastectomy she wishes she never had.
Other detransitioners give heartbreaking accounts of their ‘top’ and ‘bottom’ surgery — and their deep, deep regret.
I think there should be punishment for those who encouraged them along this devastating road.
A beloved local off the menu
Jenni enjoyed an excellent spaghetti with prawns and an equally delicious chocolate cake during a Bank Holiday lunch
Invited to lunch on Bank Holiday Monday by son and partner to a favourite Italian restaurant. On the menu was the best ever spaghetti with prawns, and a ridiculously good chocolate cake with vanilla ice cream — one portion, three spoons.
But it’s closing because of an unaffordable rent rise. No doubt a chain will take its place. Why do we allow our lovely High Streets to be ruined by unscrupulous and greedy landlords?
Supplements have been labelled ‘pointless’ by professor Tim Spector
I’m no mug for taking supplements
I’m so disappointed by professor Tim Spector, who has dubbed me a mug for taking supplements.
I follow his advice on eating ‘real food’ (sauerkraut is very healthy, apparently). Now he says all supplements, except B12 for vegans, are pointless. There he’s lost me.
I take vitamins D, B12, and C, turmeric (back pain), milk thistle (cholesterol) and apple cider vinegar (liver), biotin for hair and collagen for skin.
Though my good complexion may be due to nettle water my grandmother made me drink as a child. I guess she would win plaudits from Tim.
Kylie’s my pin-up girl
Jenni would much rather young girls turn to Kylie for inspiration rather than reality TV stars from shows such as Love Island
You have to love Kylie, looking amazing as she turns 55 and with a new dance single, Padam Padam, heading for success in the charts.
I’m sure she’s had a bit of work done on her face over the years but, if I had a daughter, I’d much prefer she looked to Kylie for inspiration and stayed well away from the bevy of Love Island ‘lovelies’.
Whoever did the study saying the suburbs can make you depressed did not live round here.
I’ve done the city centre. Noisy, crowded, busy neighbours with no time to talk.
Here, it’s a community. Lots of trees, quiet and there’s always someone to lend a hand if you need it. Never been happier.