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‘This should not happen to anyone else’: Ex-trans joins lawsuit against UK gender clinic

Keira Bell was given puberty blockers and testosterone injections by the Tavistock clinic and underwent a double mastectomy at age 20.
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Dorothy Cummings McLean By Dorothy Cummings McLean

Dorothy Cummings McLean By Dorothy Cummings McLean

LONDON, England, January 27, 20202 (LifeSiteNews) ―  A young woman who has given up her attempts to “become” a man has joined a lawsuit against the U.K.’s Tavistock Centre. 

Keira Bell, 23, has joined former Tavistock psychiatric nurse Sue Evans and a gender-confused girl’s mother, known only as Mrs. A, in bringing the action against the Tavistock and Portman NHS [National Health Service] Trust. This foundation runs the United Kingdom’s only “gender identity development service” (called GIDS) for children.

In a hearing last week, Bell’s lawyer Jeremy Hyam QC stated that the young woman had an interest in the case, as she had undergone so-called gender transition treatment. Bell was given puberty blockers and testosterone injections by the Tavistock clinic. Later she underwent a double mastectomy at the age of 20.

“She now very seriously regrets the process and feels that the way it was handled and her involvement in it was not appropriate and her approach is to say, essentially, this should not happen to anyone else,” Hyam said. 

Mr. Justice Supperstone ruled that Bell should be permitted to be one of the plaintiffs in the case. 

Bell and her fellow plaintiffs Susan Evans and Mrs. A have raised over £37,000 ($74,500 USD) to fund the inquiry into the Tavistock Centre. Bell outlined her reasons for joining the suit on their webpage, hosted by fundraising site CrowdJustice.com

“I have become a claimant in this case because I do not believe that children and young people can consent to the use of powerful and experimental hormone drugs like I did,” Bell said. 

“I believe that the current affirmative system put in place by the Tavistock is inadequate as it does not allow for exploration of these gender dysphoric feelings, nor does it seek to find the underlying causes of this condition,” she continued.  

“Hormone-changing drugs and surgery does not work for everyone and it certainly should not be offered to someone under the age of 18 when they are emotionally and mentally vulnerable.”

Bell added that treatment for gender dysphoria “urgently” needs to change so that it doesn’t put youngsters like herself “on a torturous and unnecessary path that is permanent and life-changing.”

She thanked Evans for beginning the case and pledged to end what the nurse had begun.

“I want to thank Sue Evans for having the courage to begin this case,” Bell stated. 

“Many members of the public here and around the world have given financially and sent messages of encouragement. With your help I plan to finish what Sue has begun.”

Evans launched the enquiry into the practises at Tavistock because of what she witnessed there as a psychiatric nurse. 

“While working [at the Tavistock Clinic] I quickly became concerned about the treatment approach,” she wrote on the fundraising page. 

“When I joined the [GIDS] team I had expected that the young people would be assessed in depth and given support and psychological treatment over several years,” she continued. 

“The alarm bells began ringing for me when a colleague at the weekly team clinical meeting said that they had seen a young person 4 times and they were now recommending them for a referral to the endocrinology department to commence hormone therapy.”

Evans was also concerned about the pressure put on the GIDS staff by distraught patients and families, but especially transgender activists groups like Mermaids and Gendered Intelligence. 

“I also clinically disagreed with the request to fall into line in immediately ‘affirming’ the children's beliefs and also the expectation to write to other professionals using the name and sex the child had chosen rather than the patient who had been referred,” she added. She stated that the normal professional practice is to keep an open mind while examining all the difficulties troubled children are having.  

Mrs. A is the mother of a 15-year-old girl with autism and other mental health issues. She allowed her daughter to be placed on the Tavistock waiting list because of a lack of “specialist expertise” in adolescent mental health in her area. However, she is worried that the girl may be harmed by the Tavistock’s staff.

“I have deep concerns that the current clinical approach at GIDS means that my daughter will be subjected to an experimental treatment path that is not adequately regulated, where there are insufficient safeguards, where her autism will not be properly accounted for and where no-one (let alone my daughter) understands the risks and therefore cannot ensure informed consent is obtained,” she wrote.  

Mrs. A is remaining anonymous to protect her daughter’s privacy. 


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