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JK Rowling is outraged that a trans organization gives teens chest binders

JK Rowling, transgender inmates, New Jersey
JK Rowling in 2011 Photo: Shutterstock

Author JK Rowling took to Twitter earlier this week to once again air her anti-transgender views.

This time the target of her ire was a U.K. charity organization Mermaids, which provides support for transgender, nonbinary, and gender-diverse young people and their families.

On Monday, Rowling shared a recent anti-trans story published by U.K. newspaper The Telegraph in which an anonymous adult posed as a 14-year-old seeking information from Mermaids.

“@Mermaids_Gender’s Chair of Trustees recently gave evidence under oath that Mermaids is ‘not a medical organisation.’ Now an investigation reveals they’re advising kids on puberty blockers and providing binders to underage girls without parental consent,” Rowling tweeted.

Mermaids responded to the Telegraph investigation in a statement providing information about access to its online youth forums.

“We have robust security and moderation processes in place to ensure our forums are a safe space for trans, nonbinary, and gender diverse young people and their families,” they wrote.

“In August 2022, an individual – possibly a journalist – tried to gain access to the Youth forums by pretending to be a 14-year-old in need of support, seemingly with the aim of discrediting Mermaids. This person was caught in the moderation process and has since been blocked. Security of our platforms and safeguarding of young people is of the utmost importance to us and we will continue to regularly review our processes and procedures to make sure our forums remain safe and secure.”

The organization also clarified its position on providing chest binders: “Mermaids takes a harm reduction position with the understanding that providing a young person with a binder and comprehensive safety guidelines from an experienced member of staff is preferable to the likely alternative of unsafe practices and/or continued or increasing dysphoria. The risk is considered by Mermaids staff within the context of our safeguarding framework.”

It also provided information about the medically recognized safety of puberty blockers.

Mermaids’ head of communications, Carrie Lyell, commented on Rowling’s tweet offering to have a chat about the organization’s work.

Rowling, however, went on repost a video made by anti-trans group LGB Alliance and criticized the “corporations and celebrities who’ve been cheering Mermaids on.” Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) and Harry Potter star Emma Watson are among those who have voiced support for the organization.

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