Gender affirming healthcare

The Cass Review; Our Response

In April, the NHS England released the Cass review, which has caused a bit of a stir in parliaments around Australia as LGBTIQA+ communities continue to fight for the wellbeing of trans and gender diverse children.

We know that some South Australian parliamentarians have also commented on it, and we wrote to the Minister for Health with our response, to the review which you can read here.

The reality is that the Cass review has little relevance in the Australian context and we note the words of Dr Portia Predny, Vice President of The Australian Professional Association for Trans Health (AusPATH), “The Cass review recommendations are at odds with the current evidence base, expert consensus and the majority of clinical guidelines around the world.”

Dr Predny said applying the findings and recommendations of the Cass Review to the care of young people in Australia “was fundamentally flawed” because it looked specifically at the NHS system.

“The way that gender affirming care is accessed and provided in Australia is substantially different to the way that that care is or has been provided in the NHS,” she said.

Sadly, we know from experience that evidence, even when peer reviewed and overwhelming, is often not enough to persuade people to respect their fellow human beings. We also know that this will probably not be the last time we have to have these discussions publicly.

We will continue to stand in solidarity with our Trans and Gender Diverse family in South Australia and beyond.


Harmful SA parliamentary inquiry withdrawn!

Independent MLC Frank Pangallo has officially withdrawn his motion proposing a Parliamentary inquiry into gender affirming care!

Thanks to the SA Labor Party, the SA Greens and Michelle Lensink MLC who publicly committed to voting down the inquiry, the motion lacks the numbers to pass the Legislative Council.

We thank all MLCs who trusted the medical experts and listened to the voices of trans and gender diverse South Australians.

Most importantly, this wouldn’t have happened without the members of our community who stood up for what matters!

Since the motion was first announced in November, over 1,200 South Australians signed our petition calling out the unnecessary dangers of this inquiry.

Your support provided us with a platform to amplify trans and gender diverse voices, the very people who are impacted most by this debate, through mainstream media.

While we know this isn’t the last of debates like this, we’re proud to see our community come together to protect trans kids and we’re committed to continuing to stand up for an inclusive, healthy and safe South Australia.

Thank you for all you do.

We need life saving gender affirming care to be accessible for all trans and gender diverse South Australians.

Everyone deserves to be supported to live as their authentic and best self.

For trans and gender diverse people this often means getting help from health professionals to medically affirm who they are, for example through hormones, affirming therapy and other supports.

While health and medical professional currently provides safe quality care in line with evidence based Stanadards of Care, trans and gender diverse South Australians face continued politicisation of their healthcare.

We need our political leaders to make gender affirming healthcare accessible for trans and gender diverse South Australians who need it.

What’s happened on this issue?

Our communities have advocated for many years for the South Australian Government to improve gender affirming health services for trans and gender diverse people across our State. Check out the below timeline of key events.

  • 7 February 2024

    Harmful parliamentary inquiry defeated

    After SA Labor Party, SA Greens and Hon Michelle Lensink MLC publicly committed to oppose it, the Hon. Frank Pangallo MLC withdrew his parliamentary motion to establish an inquiry into young people seeking assistance for gender dysphoria in South Australia.

  • Feb 6, 2024

    Health professionals & human rights experts reject harmful motion

    We released a joint statement along with health professionals, human rights experts and parents to call on South Australian MLCs to vote down the harmful and unnecessary parliamentary motion into gender affirming care.

    Together we amplified the voices of trans and gender diverse folk in mainstream media like Jace who shared their story of accessing gender affirming care as a teenager with 9 News.

  • 15 November 2023

    Motion for parliamentary inquiry

    The Hon. Frank Pangallo MLC tabled a parliamentary motion to establish an inquiry into young people seeking assistance for gender dysphoria in South Australia.

  • Sep 1, 2023

    Model of Care released

    After years of advocacy from trans and gender diverse communities, the South Australian Government announced the Statewide Gender Diversity Model of Care for the delivery of gender health services for people who are TGDNB or gender questioning in South Australia.
  • Jun 1, 2022

    Meeting with Health Minister

    Trans community advocates met with Health Minister Chris Picton MP. SA Health released their draft model of care later that day, with proposed funding for services to be confirmed.

  • Mar 8, 2022

    Election committment

    We wrote to all political parties in the lead up to the 2022 SA State Election.

    "Labor supports improved access to healthcare for trans and gender diverse South Australians. We condemn the Marshall Liberal Government's inaction in response to SARAA and Transcend SA's continued advocacy to improve awareness of and access to these services in South Australia - despite the clear recommendation of doctors."

    - Premier elect Peter Malinauskas,Letter to SA Rainbow Advocacy Alliance, 8 February 2022

  • Vision for SA Pride

    We released our Vision for SA Pride, a unified vision of LGBTIQA+ inclusion and equality for South Australia informed by voices of over 600 LGBTIQA+ South Australians and their allies.

    80% of respondents rated gender affirming healthcare as an extremely or very important priority.

  • Sep 1, 2021

    SA Health project update

    SA Health published an update on the development of the statewide gender diversity model of care, reflecting outcomes from community consultation.

  • Jul 1, 2021

    LGBTIQA+ priorities report

    We released our LGBTIQA+ Community Advisory Group report to government, outlining gender affirming care as a key priority for improvement.

  • May 1, 2021

    Public consultation begins

    SA Health hosted a Statewide Gender Diversity model of care workshop attended by representatives from SARAA and the trans and gender diverse community discussing their healthcare needs.

  • Feb 6, 2024

    No budget allocation

    SARAA wrote again to then Minister for Health expressing our disappointment in the lack of action in regards to healthcare for trans and gender diverse young people following the 2020-21 State Budget. Yet again, we received no response.

  • SA Health business case

    SA Health makes public statements indicating it was 'reviewing a business case for an "enhanced" gender service'.

  • May 23, 2020

    Letter to Minister Wade

    SARAA wrote to then Minister for Health advocating for increased funding for the Women’s and Children’s Hospital’s Gender Diversity Service. 

    We received no response.

  • Commissioner's report

    Commissioner for Children and Young People SA released the First Port of Call Report calling for gender affirming health services to be made available when children need them, along with greater visibility, training and information about gender diversity in healthcare.

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