The prime minister of the UK, Boris Johnson has weighed into the row over transgender rights saying biological males should not be allowed to compete in female-only sports events.
The UK leader said that parents should have ‘involvement at the very least’ in decisions made by children to alter their gender as transgender rights groups continue to spread their valued around the Western world..
Johnson’s comments come as the government faces a backlash for excluding transgender people from a ban on conversion therapy.
Conversion therapy is the pseudoscientific practice of attempting to change an individual’s sexual orientation from homosexual or bisexual to heterosexual or their gender identity from transgender to cisgender using psychological, physical, or spiritual interventions.
The UK was forced to cancel an LGBT+ conference in response to changes to a promised ban on all conversion therapy, after more than 100 charities pulled out.
Speaking during a visit to a hospital in Welwyn Garden City on Wednesday, April 6, the Prime Minister said there are still things to be worked out, and that he was ‘sad’ at the reaction of the organisations involved.
‘I don’t think that it’s reasonable for kids to be deemed so-called Gillick-competent to take decisions about their gender or irreversible treatments that they may have. I think there should be parental involvement at the very least.’
‘I don’t think that biological men should be competing in female sporting events’.
He also defended the decision to exclude transgender people from the conversion therapy ban, despite backlash from some of his own MPs.
‘We will have a ban on gay conversion therapy, which to me is utterly abhorrent.
‘But there are complexities and sensitivities when you move from the area of sexuality to the question of gender. There, I’m afraid, there are things that I think still need to be worked out.’
The PM added that women should have spaces in hospitals, prisons and changing rooms which were ‘dedicated to women’.
‘That’s as far as my thinking has developed on this issue. If that puts me in conflict with some others, then we have got to work it all out,’ he said.
‘That doesn’t mean that I’m not immensely sympathetic to people who want to change gender, to transition.
‘It’s vital that we give people the maximum possible love and support in making those decisions.
‘But these are complex issues and I don’t think they can be solved with one swift, easy piece of legislation. It takes a lot of thought to get this right.’