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Scott Morrison via Twitter.
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Health

Scott Morrison Criticised for Offensive Tweet About Transgender Schoolkids


Why Global Citizens Should Care
Australian schools promoting diversity and acceptance is a wonderful thing, especially considering LGBTQ people around the world still face shocking levels of hate and discrimination. You can take action to promote diversity, acceptance, and tolerance here.

Newly appointed Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison has made his stance on gender identity issues blatantly clear.

In response to a Daily Telegraph article that claimed schools are employing gender dysphoria-trained counselors to work with transgender students, Morrison tweeted that “gender whisperers” were not needed and that Australian schools should simply “let kids be kids”.

Take Action: Call on new Prime Minister Scott Morrison to work towards a better Australia.

The article further revealed that recent years have seen a “surge” of young children referred to gender clinics, with New South Wales teachers now receiving training from transgender support organisation The Gender Centre to help them identify students who may be questioning their gender identity.

“Teachers are now being taught to spot potential transgender students in the classroom — with experts claiming the move has contributed to a 236% surge in the number of kids wanting to change sex in the past three years,” the Daily Telegraph article reported.


Mel McKinlay, the mother of a 15-year-old transgender student, told Australian news website news.com.au that the prime minister needed to reevaluate his choice of words and comprehend the terrible impact ignorance and negative comments can have on trans students.  

“The term ‘gender whisperer’ is just another notch in a long history of LGBTQ people dehumanised, treated as subhuman, or otherwise perverted and not fit for society,” McKinlay stated. “Terms like ‘transgender agenda’ and ‘transgender contagion’ are terms that I have become accustomed to reading via social media pages that endeavorto reject our children and the legitimacy of our children’s existence, but I am not accustomed to reading this type of garbage from our ministers of parliament.”

“While Morrison’s remark may seem like a harmless comment on social media, it is actually a platform for hate speech and as such should not be taken lightly.”


In response to Morrison's tweet, Kimmi Everson, the vice president of The Gender Centre, clarified that the organisation only offers guidance and support when directly approached by schools. 

“The training that The Gender Centre then offers to staff is on how to accommodate the needs of existing transgender or gender diverse students within their specific schools,” she stated. "The Gender Centre does not work with any school without the involvement of parents."

The need for increased support for transgender children is well documented. 

A 2017 report from Australian medical research organisation Telethon Kids Institute revealed that 48% of transgender youth had attempted suicide, with 4 out of 5 having engaged in self-harm.

“Trans children are in every school," gender counselor Elizabeth Riley stated, citing 1% of all students identify as trans. “Mental health issues, depression, anxiety, suicidal ideation, and self-harm can all come from students not getting the support they need.”