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Child running with a transgender flag, Portland. Photo credit: Mercedes Mehling

Swedish hospital reviews transgender policy

Sweden's most prestigious hospital is reviewing its protocol and no longer giving minors sex-changing hormones. Will the first country in the world to recognize transgender rights back-peddle? From an extremely rare phenomenon, affecting a few individuals from early childhood, gender dysphoria has become a mass pathology, appearing with adolescence.

Published: June 16, 2021, 1:44 pm

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    Karolinska’s pediatric gender services at Astrid Lindgren Children’s Hospital (ALB), in Stockholm, has stopped its practice of prescribing puberty blockers and cross-sex hormones to minors who claim they suffer from gender dysphoria.

    Because it happened to her daughter, Asa prefers to show the album where she took a picture of her, every month, from the age of 14. “This is when Johanna started cutting her hair very short, putting on a chest bandage to flatten it out,” she said.

    The pictures present a sad and obvious timeline: the smile disappears, the face becomes emaciated: “She fell ill, anorexia. At the hospital, I noticed she was following transgender accounts on social media. She told me that she suffered from gender dysphoria, that she couldn’t stand her body anymore… She decided to become Kasper, a boy.”

    His face then appears more assertive, dyed hair, manly air. And then, at 19, Johanna reappears as a girl, an enigmatic glint in her eyes: “It’s a journey that lasted two long years,” Asa told French daily Le Figaro. “My daughter changed her gender, her identity, but then she had the immense courage to admit her mistake. I am very proud of her.”

    But in Argentina, the Chamber of Deputies plans to increase the number of adherents to transsexuality. It has introduced a law through which one percent of public service positions will be reserved for transgender people in the future.

    Another French daily Les Échos reported the remarks of Congresswoman Maria Rosa Martinez during her speech in the plenary hall: “These laws position us as pioneers, not only in Latin America, but also in the world.”

    According to the newspaper, the law was passed with 207 votes in favour, eleven people voted against and seven abstained. Now the new law with the title “Trans Quota” only needs to be approved by the Senate. It follows a number of other laws of the Argentine government from the past few years and accelerates its feminist and LGBTQI + agenda, including “marriage for all” from 2010, the law on “gender identity” from 2012 and the legalization of abortions in 2020.

    “We are responding to a historical need of this community, which has been systematically excluded from the family, education, health, access to housing and work,” said the President of the Parliamentary Commission on Women and Diversity and one of the architects of the draft law, Mónica Macha.

    The law aims to create around 2500 jobs in the public sector. According to the newspaper, financial incentives will be promised to many municipalities, universities and also the private sector. For example, the law states that the state wants to give preference to companies with transgender employees when making purchases.

    Of the 9000 Argentines who have applied to change their gender identity, 95 percent do not have a formal job and 70 percent would never get an appointment for an interview, since around 80 percent of transgender people prefer prostitution.

    “We are trying to achieve a situation in which it is more and more common for trans people to have access to regular work and the possibility, if they wish, to quit prostitution conditions in which they normally live,” the MP said.

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