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LONDON, England (LifeSiteNews) ― Former employees of a publicly-funded transgender clinic for children have called for an end to its experimental procedures.

For a top story today, The Times of London interviewed five experts who resigned from the Tavistock Clinic, the National Health Service’s one center for treating children who believe they are “transgender.” The five clinicians all allege that the Tavistock Centre, run by the Gender Identity Development Service (GIDS), has been approving “life-changing medical intervention” for children and teens “without sufficient evidence of its long-term effects.”

According to the Times, the medical professionals left the Tavistock Centre because of the way children with body dysmorphia were treated. They believe that some children were misdiagnosed as “transgender” merely because they experienced same-sex sexual attractions.

All of these clinicians were responsible for determining which children should and should not have puberty-delaying hormone blockers. In most cases, children who are given puberty-blockers begin to take “cross-sex hormones” when they are 16. The effects of these hormones are “irreversible.”

The Times, which did not name the Tavistock ex-employees, said they alleged that kids were OK’d for the life-changing therapies before the clinic had established the causes for their “gender confusion.” The venerable newspaper also reported that the GIDS had, during an internal review, voiced regret for its referral system and the way it got and recorded the consent from its under-age clients.

Meanwhile, the five clinicians also said they believe transgender charities like Mermaids, run by transgender activist Susie Green, do damage by “allegedly promoting transition as a cure-all solution for confused adolescents.”

The Times also interviewed Carl Heneghan of the Centre of Evidence-based Medicine at Oxford University. He, too, described transgender therapies as experimental.  

“Given paucity of evidence, the off-label use of drugs (i.e. what they are approved for) in gender dysphoria treatment largely means an unregulated live experiment on children,” he said.

Today’s Times, traditionally the newspaper of the British establishment, devoted four articles to the controversy. Professor Henegan’s name appeared in the paper’s inside pages, this time under the byline of an opinion piece.

“The mess we have gotten ourselves into with the treatment of gender dysphoria in children and adolescents highlights all that is concerning with the present use and evaluation of powerful medicines in this age group,” he wrote.

Heneghan gave examples of hormones and drugs used by so-called gender reassignment clinics, and stated that “all clinics use different drugs and different doses.”

“That in itself is concerning,” he added.

Another article focused on the influence transgender activists has over families and clinicians. Although “Mermaids” and “Gendered Intelligence” deny they are lobbyists, the Tavistock ex-employees accused them of exploiting the families and bullying doctors.

“Mermaids is always saying this is a matter of life and death. ‘Would you rather have an alive boy or a dead girl?’ That Mermaids narrative is everywhere,” said one of the former clinicians.

Caroline Farrow, the Catholic mother who has suffered months of online abuse thanks to her critique of the transgender movement, told LifeSiteNews that she was pleased by the Times stories.

“The Times has exposed what hundreds of thousands of women have been saying for a long time now,” she said. “Children are being fast-tracked to a lifetime of medical intervention.”

Farrow added that the Times story “opened a window” on the need for safeguarding children vulnerable to adults who are willing to give them puberty blockers and cross-sex hormones.

“Now there needs to be a public inquiry as to how these (transgender activist) groups managed to get so much influence,” she said.

Farrow isn’t celebrating yet, however. She told LSN that that every child or teenager who has undergone a “gender transition” has been “rendered sterile” and been robbed of the healthy sex life he or she might have had as an adult. For every child who will now depend on lifelong medical intervention, there is an “individual tragedy,” she stressed.

“I think there will be lawsuits in 20 years’ time,” Farrow added.

The number of British children and teens seeking help with gender identity issues from the GIDS has skyrocketed in less than a decade. According to the Times, in 2010 there were 94 referrals. The NHS reported that in 2017/2018 there were 2,519. The public health body also says this represents a 25 percent increase over 2016/2017, when there were 2,016.

Teenage girls in particular are at risk of being referred to the GIDS. The NHS reported that in the 2017/2018 year, more than half (1,806) were for biological females (or, in NHS-speak “young people assigned female at birth (AFAB)”). Biological males numbered 713.

“This continues the trend of an increase in AFAB (sic) referral proportionately,” the NHS remarked.