Hello everyone, I hope you're ready for your weekly News Roundup! Here’s what’s been happening this week…
Tavistock & Bell - High Court decision overturned!
EU Clashes with Poland and Hungary over LGBT+ Rights
Pride March in Ukraine Scotland is the first country to add LGBT+ education into their national curriculum.
Tavistock v Bell - High Court decision overturned! The Court of Appeal has overturned the High Court’s decision from December 2020 which stated that trans people aged under 16 would have to go before a judge in order to access puberty blockers.
Tavistock v Bell - A summary
Tavistock v Bell is a High Court case between the Tavistock & Portman NHS Trust and Kiera Bell, who was bringing her case forward on behalf of Sue Evans, a former nurse at the Leeds GIDS, and “Mrs A”, the parent of a 15 year old on the GIDS waiting list.
The case began in October 2019 and brought forward the subject of whether puberty blockers could be prescribed to under-18s with gender dysphoria. This relates to the concept of ‘Gillick competence’ - a term used by medical professionals to describe whether a person under 16 is mature enough to fully understand and consent to treatment by themselves.
Mrs A and Sue Evans suggested that advice around hormone therapy is “potentially misleading” and an under 16 year old could not give “true informed consent”. Kiera Bell joined their case as she was prescribed puberty blockers at 16 and had her top-surgery at age 20 but later regretted her transition. Despite the fact that puberty blockers are considered safe, reversible and the best-practice for young trans people, in December 2020 the High Court ruled that it was unlikely that a person under the age of 16 could be Gillick competent to consent to this type of treatment. This meant that the NHS had to immediately pause GIDs referrals for puberty blockers.
Starting in January 2021, the NHS appealed to have this decision overturned.
In March 2021, the Family Division of the High Court changed the ruling so that under-16s were able to access puberty blockers if they had p