Trans charity Mermaids removed from school resources after 'concerns' raised by watchdog

Trans charity Mermaids removed from school resources after 'concerns' raised by watchdog
Rebecca Hutson

By Rebecca Hutson

Published: 12/10/2022

- 11:42

Updated: 14/02/2023

- 10:36

The Charity Commission has launched a compliance probe into the charity's approach to safeguarding young people

Controversial trans-charity Mermaids has been removed from mental health and well being resources for schools by the Department for Education.

It follows the Charity Commission launching a compliance probe after 'concerns were raised' by the charity's approach to 'safeguarding young people'.

Previously, the Mermaids advice line was included in a list of resources for schools and those working with children and young people. It was described as offering a 'free and confidential phone and web-chat service designed to support trans, gender-diverse and non-binary students'.

The DfE have said the reference was removed as a precautionary measure following the investigation by The Charity Commission.

In response, Mermaids said it is closing its helpline service to give staff 'respite' from 'unacceptable abuse'.

The charity continued 'thousands of people will continue [to benefit] from its services and that it is 'in the midst of a targeted, cynical attack'.

The Telegraph has previously reported that the charity was 'handing out potentially harmful breast binders to girls as young as 13', while the Times reported this month that a Mermaids trustee has resigned having appeared at a conference which promoted services to paedophiles.

The opening of a compliance case is not in itself a finding of wrongdoing, but is the first step the charity commission can take in examining potential wrongdoing.

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