On May 16, 2016 Oregon Governor Kate Brown received a 6-page letter from Dr. Michelle A. Cretella, President of the American College of Pediatricians (ACP), a national organization of over twenty-thousand physicians and health professionals (www.best4children.org/). The ACP letter was in response to a 15-page Oregon Department of Education document titled ‘Guidance to School Districts: Creating a Safe and Supportive School Environment for Transgender Students’ that was sent to all Oregon Superintendents.
In this letter to Governor Kate Brown, the American College of Pediatricians commends the Oregon Department of Education (ODE) for its “professed goal to foster a safe environment that is conducive to optimal learning for all students” however they go on to state that “We are gravely concerned, however, that the implementation of the ODE’s ‘Guidance to School Districts: Creating a Safe and Supportive Environment for Transgender Students’ issued May 5, 2016 will severely undermine this goal…[and] “will threaten the health, privacy, safety and learning experience of all students”.
This ACP letter goes on to state that “Affirmation of gender dysphoria has no basis in science and is highly controversial among experts”….and that a “claim that gender identity is the equivalent of sex as codified in Title IX has no basis in science”. Additionally, “Experts agree that 80-95% of pre-pubertal youth with gender dysphoria will come to accept their biological sex by late adolescence… [and] normalizing the myth of innate gender fluidity will cause psychological trauma to youth who are not presently confused about their gender identity”.
Included in this letter is a warning about “actively affirming gender-variant students” and that “Medical transition of pre-pubertal children in this fashion [puberty-blockers and cross-sex hormones] results in sterility and the life-time use of toxic hormones that are fraught with serious potential physical and mental health risks”.
In addition, ACP notes that eliminating “sex-segregated private spaces in public schools violates all students’ fundamental rights to privacy, safety and a secure learning environment…It is imperative for the optimal health of all students” that restrooms and other private spaces be “segregated according to biological sex”.