“Katter calls for inquiry into kids’ care at QCGS”

Jun 21, 2023

Katter’s Australian Party Leader and Traeger MP Robbie Katter has called for an independent inquiry to be held in the operation of the Queensland Children’s Gender Service.


He said an inquiry, which must be held at arm’s length from Queensland Health and clinic itself, ought to focus on the appropriateness of gender-affirming care and concerns around the freedom of clinicians to offer unbiased treatment to vulnerable children experiencing gender dysphoria.


The calls come following recent media reports that a female psychiatrist, who is allegedly well-known for questioning some aspects of the affirmative approach, had been stood down following a complaint of “transphobia”.[1]


Mr Katter said he had, over the years, attempted to get clarity from the Queensland Health Minister regarding the operation of the clinic.


He said admissions from the Minister at the time had included that, as of late 2022, 26 per cent (370) of the 1,424 children who had been cared for at the clinic had received testosterone or estrogen therapy in a bid to “affirm” their new gender.


These cross-sex hormones carry irreversible side-effects of sterility and loss of sexual function, prompting doctors in parts of Europe and the UK to employ more cautious approach to the prescription of such drugs amid concerns of a lack of evidence.


Last week, The Australian[2] reported that the QCGS currently has 922 patients on its books and, according to FOI documents, prescribed cross-sex hormones to 102 adolescents in 2022.


This is understood to be twice as many as the Melbourne Children’s Hospital’s gender clinic.


Mr Katter said last week’s passage of the Births, Deaths and Marriages Registration Bill 2022 in the Queensland Parliament which, among other things, provide legal avenues to children as young as 12 to change their sex on their birth certificate was only furthering the harm young kids could be exposed to.


He said an inquiry would least allow growing concerns, across the medical profession and the general public, to be heard and would prevent further unnecessary and irreversible harm to kids.


“The QCGS have no social mandate to subscribe to one treatment approach over another – the claim that the affirmative approach is the only ‘safe’ approach, and that is evidence-backed, is becoming increasingly scrutinised around the world,” he said.


“The clinic itself is in Brisbane, and is a long way from my home in Mount Isa, but every Queensland parent could find themselves affected by what is going on should their child begin to suffer gender dysphoria.


“This is not as niche of an issue as many would like to believe, and it is being driven by global, insidious forces that seek to re-write society’s understanding of sex and gender – our kids are lambs to the slaughter for this broader cause.


“What hope have our kids got?”