“Devastated” Victorian parents left in the dark as schools allow their kids to socially transition | Sun Herald

Victorian kids with gender dysphoria are being socially transitioned at school without their parents’ knowledge.
Frustrated parents say they feel betrayed by the state’s education department after they were left in the dark about their child’s new gender identity at school.
In Victoria, most high school students can request that teachers call them a different name and different pronouns at school, without permission from their parents.
One concerned dad on the Bellarine Peninsula told the Herald Sun his daughter, who has been diagnosed with autism, was called a different name and male pronouns at school for months without his knowledge, despite requesting that he be kept in the loop.
The dad, who wished to remain anonymous to protect his daughter, said it was “absolutely devastating” and a “complete betrayal of trust”.
“This is a kid who only discovered last year that Santa wasn’t real,” he said.
The Herald Sun asked the education department whether they kept a record of how many students were identifying as trans at school but they refused to provide information.
But prominent Victorian detransitioner Mel Jefferies told the Herald Sun if the government did not reconsider it’s model of care, it would be hit with “a tidal wave of legal cases”.
As a teenager, Ms Jefferies struggled with body image issues and became confused about her gender, choosing to identify as a boy following several visits to clinicians.
At age 26 she had her breasts removed under medical advice.
“It was within two weeks of having my breasts removed, I was like, I want a flat stomach, I hate my thighs or I hate my hips,” she said.
“It literally just migrated.”

Inquiry into family violence orders – Parliament of Australia

The Standing Committee on Social Policy and Legal Affairs adopted an inquiry into family violence orders on 4 June 2024, following a referral from the Attorney-General, the Hon Mark Dreyfus KC MP.

The Committee is seeking written submissions, addressing one or more of the terms of reference by Friday, 19 July 2024.

Parliamentary committees cannot investigate or assist with individual cases, particularly those that are, or may be, before the courts. The Committee will not be publishing contributions that provide personal details or include information relating to individual cases or court orders. However, it may receive personal submissions as confidential evidence if they inform how the system and supports for victim-survivors may be improved.

Further information about making a submission to a parliamentary committee is available here.

If you are experiencing any issues uploading your submission through the online portal please email your submission to [email protected].

Source: Inquiry into family violence orders – Parliament of Australia

Gender grind – by Bernard Lane – Gender Clinic News

An Australian family law judge, Peter Tree, has raised the prospect that lengthy disputes over access to gender medicine for minors could “grind the court to death.”

Justice Tree, of the Federal Circuit and Family Court, made the remark yesterday in a protracted case1 where the parents are divided over a girl’s wish for cross-sex hormone treatment and where there are conflicting views about the relevance of England’s Cass report issued in April.

The court heard there were two other lengthy gender medicine cases now running, and the judge suggested it might reach the point where “the case for statutory intervention becomes overwhelming”—meaning law reform by federal parliament.

The court had the job of ensuring minors were competent to consent to puberty blockers, cross-sex hormones and surgery, such as double mastectomy, given the attendant risks. However, human rights lawyers and the gender clinic of the Royal Children’s Hospital (RCH) Melbourne argued this requirement was unnecessary and discriminated against trans-identifying patients.

In the 2017 re Kelvin case, the full Family Court agreed to wind back judicial supervision of treatment decisions involving irreversible cross-sex hormones, endorsing a claim by RCH Melbourne that advances in the medical science of gender dysphoria justified the change. Since that ruling, the court has only taken gender medicine cases where parents or doctors disagree.

In yesterday’s hearing, barrister Belle Lane, appearing for the parent opposed to hormone treatment, argued for the relevance of the Cass report to Australian clinical practice. She described it as the “most significant and comprehensive review” of gender medicine.

Ms Lane said her questions should be allowed, insofar as treatment policy related to the best interests of the child.

Justice Tree said the proposal was only to administer testosterone— “that’s all that’s proposed.”

“… with lifelong implications,” Ms Lane added.

Justice Tree said that whatever view he took of the Cass report, it would set no precedent and judges in future gender medicine cases could disagree with him.

And he said “the real problem” with re Kelvin was that it had “pretended” to be a case stated—a procedure where a court is asked to decide certain questions based on agreed facts—when the point had been determined.

Ms Lane said the full court in re Kelvin had failed to analyse the scientific evidence, and the agreed facts had included the assertion that there was a clinical consensus on gender dysphoria treatment internationally.

Justice Tree said re Kelvin would not “stand in the way” of a legal challenge arguing that cross-sex hormone treatment was “not therapeutic”.

Ms Lane suggested it might be cosmetic or experimental. Justice Tree said it either fixed a condition or it might be just some “swanning around in corporeal fancy dress”.

As for the Cass report, the judge said he would allow Ms Lane’s line of questioning “but on a tight leash”.

Source: Gender grind – by Bernard Lane – Gender Clinic News

LEGISLATIVE COUNCIL – Signing ePetition – Vote against the Equality Legislation Amendment (LGBTIQA+) Bill 2023

Source: LEGISLATIVE COUNCIL – Signing ePetition – Vote against the Equality Legislation Amendment (LGBTIQA+) Bill 2023

Council apologises for discriminating against trans critic, Louise Elliot, pays compensation | The Australian

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Hobart City Council has apologised to a transgender rights critic, conceding it discriminated against her by blocking her from booking a venue, and it is understood will pay her compensation.

Examining Helen Dalton MP’s Amendments to the Equality Bill | The Catholic Weekly

Helen Dalton MP, the Independent member for Murray, raised 16 amendments to the seven-member committee, all of which were defeated, before the report was released on 3 June recommending the draft legislation be considered by parliament. 

She says the bill goes further than simply promoting the equality of LGBT persons and, if passed, will direct much-needed resources from the bush to city electorates. 

The green light for debate comes despite an online survey by the NSW Legislative Assembly Committee on Community Services indicating 85 per cent of more than 13,000 respondents were opposed to the bill and the vast majority also opposed to its specific recommendations. 

Dalton first moved that the report recommend the parliament not proceed to consider the Equality Legislation Amendment (LGBTIQA+) Bill 2023. 

Also voted down were Dalton’s attempts to insert arguments from advocacy group Women’s Forum Australia against the decriminalisation of prostitution due to its “harmful and exploitative nature,” and the Feminist Legal Clinic against reducing prohibitions against commercial surrogacy laws. 

Both proposals are in the bill, which recommends changes to 20 different laws. 

Dalton wanted the testimony of Genspect Australia about new evidence of harms associated with the use of puberty blockers and cross-sex hormones on children and young people, and the growing number of detransitioners, to be included in the report, which only mildly notes that “stakeholders called for caution” on providing access to these. 

“I’m not at all discriminatory but I think that this bill is really bad for women and girls and is a real step back for us in the bush,” she said. 

“Most of our pools have been built years ago, we don’t have little change cubicles that can give you privacy, and I don’t know if I want my eight-year-old girl getting changed in the same room as basically a man who’s expecting to be [regarded as] a woman.  

“I don’t think that’s acceptable for most people. We haven’t got any equivalence with medical care [in the cities] or anything like that.  

“We’re just so far behind and I can just see if this bill passes that it will be even worse for us when we’re trying to just get the basics for the majority of people.” 

Source: Examining Helen Dalton MP’s Amendments to the Equality Bill | The Catholic Weekly

Aboriginal children ‘unnecessarily’ removed from families, communities in SA, report finds – ABC News

South Australia’s Commissioner for Aboriginal Children and Young People says First Nations children’s rights are being “trampled on” by what she describes as an “institutionally racist” child protection system.

In the Holding on to Our Future report tabled in SA parliament on Wednesday, Commissioner April Lawrie found that in a single calendar year, one-in-two South Australian Aboriginal children are reported at least once to child protection authorities, and one-in-10 are placed in out-of-home care.

The 176-page report has made 48 findings and 32 recommendations to reduce the number of First Nations children in the child protection system.

“The state is unnecessarily removing disproportionate and growing numbers of Aboriginal children from their families and communities, causing long-term harm to their health, wellbeing and life chances,” Ms Lawrie said.

They are removals that could have been avoided where removals often become the first option rather than the last resort,” she said.

“Our families could have been afforded referrals into early help services to address the underlying causes of the issues in the first place that have them, before child protection.”

She warned that unless change was made, First Nations children would enter state care at rates similar to those of the Stolen Generation.

Last financial year, SA’s Department for Child Protection removed 105 babies, aged under one month, from their mothers.

About one third of those were Aboriginal, and most were removed before they were one-week-old.

Ms Lawrie said mothers had told her they had experienced “revolting grief” after their newborn babies were removed by child protection authorities.

“They were the last to know that there had been a plan in place during their pregnancy that they were unaware of to conduct a removal without their knowledge until the point of delivery,” she said.

“This abhorrent practice of uninformed removals in birthing hospitals needs to cease.”

Source: Aboriginal children ‘unnecessarily’ removed from families, communities in SA, report finds – ABC News

Expert panel to tell government how to prevent violence against women and children – ABC News

The Albanese government has been heavily criticised by the domestic, sexual and family violence response sector following the federal budget, which was described by frontline workers as “trickery and deception”.

The “rapid review” will cost $1.3 million over two years and will be led by Domestic, Family and Sexual Violence Commissioner Micaela Cronin, director of the Commonwealth Office for Women Padma Raman, and secretary of the Department of Social Services Ray Griggs.

The panel’s report is due between July and September, though a specific date has not yet been set.

Advocates, frontline workers and peak bodies have said they have reached saturation point on consultation on what governments must do to prevent and respond to violence against women and children.

They have called for urgent, ongoing funding for services, and for recommendations from previous reviews to be followed through.

An expert panel, which will include journalist and critic of current prevention strategies Jess Hill, will conduct the review alongside Ms Cronin, Ms Raman and Mr Griggs.

In a recent paper in collaboration with Michael Salter, Hill highlighted that across multiple metrics the current approach to prevention — focusing very heavily on increasing gender equality — had failed to reduce or prevent violence.

“We are not suggesting that the gendered violence sector abandon the project of gender equality as an important goal, but we do dispute a disproportionate focus on ‘gendered drivers’ of violence, both in analysis of the problem and the parameters of the prevention response.”

Also on the panel are:

  • Todd Fernando, former Victorian LGBTQIA+ communities commissioner, co-founder of Koorie Pride Victoria and academic
  • Leigh Gassner, assistant commissioner of Victoria Police
  • Anne Summers, journalist and key figure in establishing early women’s and children’s refuges
  • Elena Campbell, academic
  • Zac Seidler, academic and global director of men’s health research at Movember.

[Ed: Almost half are blokes. And some women willing to redefine what a woman is to keep men happy. More trickery and deception to follow.]

Source: Expert panel to tell government how to prevent violence against women and children – ABC News

Family Court case: Some testosterone side effects ‘reversible’, gender clinician tells child | The Australian

A doctor advising a young girl on whether to take cross-sex hormones told the child some side ­effects of taking testosterone, including vaginal atrophy, were reversible or would not last forever, and said there was “scientific debate” about whether the treatment could have an impact on her fertility.

The doctor, who works for one of Australia’s largest public gender clinics, also says gender diversity is a “normal variation of human development” and refuses to admit it could be influenced by “external pressure”.
The case emerged as the latest development in a highly complex family law matter in which the parents are divided over whether their child can medically transition to become a boy.
One parent opposes the prescription of the cross-sex hormones, previously telling the child they will “grow out of it”. The other supports the transition, and is trying to claim full parental responsibility.
The matter is on the brink of becoming a “royal commission” into the Australian model of care for gender dysphoria, the Federal Circuit and Family Court heard on Tuesday, as lawyers debate the legitimacy of Britain’s Cass review which found Australia’s guidelines on gender-affirmative medicine lacked rigour and independence.
The Australian is bound by a strict suppression order that ­prevents – among other things – the publication of either parent’s gender, or the name of any clinicians that have treated the gender dysphoric child.
The doctor was asked by ­barrister Belle Lane, acting for the parent ­opposed to the child’s transition, how she could be sure whether a child’s gender identity would remain into adulthood before prescribing them medical treatment.
“You don’t have any test that gives with absolute certainty that a child’s gender identity will continue through their adult life,” Ms Lane said.
The doctor responded: “No such test exists and gender identity changes over time. There is no specific test to determine how someone will feel in the future about their gender identity but that doesn’t mean we … take it on face value.”

Source: Family Court case: Some testosterone side effects ‘reversible’, gender clinician tells child | The Australian