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BBC documentary features doctor who tried to ‘cure’ trans kids

Nick Duffy January 6, 2017

The BBC is set to air a documentary about transgender children featuring an “expert” who allegedly tried to “cure” trans kids by banning them playing with dolls.

BBC Two documentary ‘Transgender Kids: Who Knows Best?’ is set to air next Thursday.

The programme will follow disgraced doctor Kenneth Zucker, who was sacked from a gender identity clinic because of concerns about his attempts to ‘cure’ transgender children.

An online description for the documentary states: “In this challenging documentary, BBC Two’s award-winning This World strand travels to Canada, where one of the world’s leading experts in childhood gender dysphoria (the condition where children are unhappy with their biological sex) lost his job for challenging the new orthodoxy that children know best.

“Speaking on TV for the first time since his clinic was closed, Dr Kenneth Zucker believes he is a victim of the politicisation of transgender issues.

“The film presents evidence that most children with gender dysphoria eventually overcome the feelings without transitioning and questions the science behind the idea that a boy could somehow be born with a ‘female brain’ or vice versa.”

As editor of the journal Archives of Sexual Behavior, in 2003 Dr Zucker published a controversial study from a researcher arguing for reparative therapy to “cure” homosexuality, though Dr Zucker strongly denies personally advocating reparative therapy for gay people.

Dr Zucker later served as the head of the Gender Identity Service at Toronto’s Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH), but was dismissed from his position following a damning review of his practices.

The controversial doctor had focused treatment on convincing transgender youth to “feel more secure about his or her actual gender”, while encouraging parents to “set limits on things like cross-dressing” and stop them playing with “girlish” toys.

He urges parents “to steer their children toward gender-typical toys, clothes and playmates and advises them to prohibit behaviors associated with the other sex” – advice condemned as potentially harmful by trans health experts.

CAMH had issued an apology after the report exposed the practises, explaining: “At CAMH, excellence is our starting point – we expect CAMH’s services to reflect the latest and best practices in the field.

“We want to apologize for the fact that not all of the practices in our childhood gender identity clinic are in step with the latest thinking.

“CAMH agrees with the reviewers that this is an opportune and somewhat natural time for re-visioning of our child and youth gender identity services. There is a tremendous need for services such as this, clinically and academically.”

 

More: Americas, Canada, Dr Kenneth Zucker, Gay, LGBT, US, Zucker

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