David Pilgrim posted
The problematic use of the term ‘vexatious’ by Heather Wood in her comment on my post (26 November), was made prior to the judicial review announcement (December, 1st 2020). Surely the ‘no debate’ position of those supporting the use of puberty blockers for children, with the trajectory that sets for later biomedical interventions, is no longer tenable. It is that notion of ‘no debate’ which reflects a vexatious position. Now psychologists, like others, should be debating this matter publicly and according to standard academic conventions of respect (i.e. avoiding ad hominem reasoning and weighing up evidential and ethical considerations in the round).
Unfortunately, the parlous state of BPS governance in the past few years has not ensured this needed scenario. Instead the poor consultations about the revised Memorandum of Understanding on conversion therapy (NB the 2017 version, not the original in 2015), the now contested policy on gender and the incipient attempt by some to extend prescribing rights to psychologists (which might include hormones) have left us without a full and democratically deliberated set of policies from the Society. This leaves the acting CEO of the BPS in a difficult position when responding, for example, to the Judicial Review’s announcement. My hope is that people will contribute to this blog with their views on where this leaves us all now in relation to child protection and our work in the NHS.