The show, available on the CBBC website, has been slammed as inappropriate for young children as it depicts an 11-year-old’s struggle to get hormones that stunt puberty.
It’s not so much the subject the matter that has upset parents, more that it features on the Beeb’s CBBC website, aimed at children as young as six.
Campaigners say the programme could ‘sow the seeds of confusion’ in young minds.
Just A Girl tells the story of a child called Amy who dresses as a girl, but reveals she was born a boy called Ben and has started using puberty-halting drugs.
Amy also has a friend Josh, a boy who wants to be recognised as a girl.
Mums across the UK have said they will formally complain about the show which tackles the subject of children preparing for gender reassignment surgery in the future. Others have called for it to be scrapped altogether.
One mother, writing on the Mumsnet website, said her daughter had question her gender identity and asked her ‘anxiously, if that means she was a boy’.
Conservative MP, Peter Bone, said: “It beggars belief that the BBC is making this programme freely available to children as young as six. I entirely share the anger of parents who just want to let children be children.
“It is completely inappropriate for such material to be on the CBBC website and I shall be writing to BBC bosses to demand they take it down as soon as possible.”
Former Culture Secretary Maria Miller voiced her concerns over the BBC tackling the subject in ‘an age-appropriate way’, saying such issues should be raised ‘where children can have support from parents’.
But the BBC said it was aiming to ‘reflect true life’ with enough context for young people to understand.
A BBC spokesman said: “Just A Girl is about a fictional transgender character trying to make sense of the world, deal with bullying and work out how to keep her friends, which are universal themes that many children relate to, and which has had a positive response from our audience.
“CBBC aims to reflect true life, providing content that mirrors the lives of as many UK children as possible.”
Polly Carmichael, a clinical psychologist, added support saying: “Raising awareness of these issues is the best way to challenge stigma and discrimination associated with identity issues. Programmes like Just A Girl can contribute to a healthy and informed public discussion.”
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