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Introduction to Serving LGBTQ Youth

Presented to CBPYT AmeriCorps on 12/7/12
by

Marv Allen

on 4 April 2014

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Transcript of Introduction to Serving LGBTQ Youth

Introduction to Serving LGBTQ Youth
Introduction
LGBTQ Youth Statistics
Definitions
CWLA
Best Practice Guidelines
Marvyn Allen, MPA
Denver Human services, Chafee Foster Care Independence Program
Working with LGBTQ youth and training others since 2004
Best Practice Guidelines: Serving LGBT Youth in Out-of-Home Care
Developed and presented by:
MARVYN ALLEN, MPA

Developed by the Child Welfare League of America
1st policy and practice guide for serving LGBT youth in out-of-home care
Based on Model Standards Project recommendations
Scope of the 7 Guidelines
Address the practical needs of LGBT youth in out-of-home care
Grounded in youth development approach
Specifically discuss sexual orientation AND gender identity
1. Agencies should create and maintain an inclusive organizational culture where the inherent worth and dignity of every person is respected and in which every person is treated fairly.
Adopt a policy
Implement the policy
Provide initial and ongoing training
Display posters
Create opportunities for dialogue
Promptly intervene
Treat all youth and adults equally and with respect
2. Agencies should work with LGBT youth in the context of their families and support the development of permanent adult connections
Provide services which strengthen and support families while protecting youth
Provide information to families of LGBT youth
Reunify with families when/if it is safe
Find and nurture permanent connections for LGBT youth not going home
3. Agencies should promote positive adolescent development for LGBT youth.
Permit coming out
Allow youth to express their sexual orientations and gender identities through clothing, hairstyle, and accessories
Prevent double standards, i.e., rules on romantic relationships
Validate transgender youth
Prohibit attempts to make youth straight or gender conforming
Ensure LGBT youth have access to community resources
Provide media with LGBT positive images
4. Agencies should be careful to protect the confidentiality of LGBT youth.
Agencies should training personnel on confidentiality of LGBT youth
Caregivers should not disclose identity without permission, and professionals should consider pros and cons and discuss it with the youth
Any disclosure about LGBT identity should be necessary and for reasons beneficial to the youth
5. Agencies should place LGBT youth in supportive family settings.
Involve the youth
Ensure the placement family is accepting
Place with families when possible
Provide training to caregivers
Provide support to caregivers
Work with caregivers during coming out and transitions to avoid placement disruptions
6. Agencies should ensure that LGBT youth in congregate care settings are safe and treated equitably
Make housing and classification decisions on case-by-case basis
Never classify as sex offenders
Do not segregate for protection
Respond to incidences of violence and abuse
Should be allowed to have roommates-Should not be forced to have homo/transphobic roommates
Staff should model respective and accepting behaviors
Transgender youth should generally be housed with self-identified gender
7. Agencies should ensure LGBT youth receive quality health and educational services.
Ensure health and mental health workers are trained to offer competent care
Investigate mental health counselors to ensure they provide affirming support
Support transgender youth in receiving medically necessary transition-related treatment by providing any necessary authorization
Provide LGBT youth with comprehensive, relevant sexual health information
Objectives
Familiarize ourselves with current statistics on LGBTQ youth
Review definitions we know and learn new language and definitions to help us in our work
Practice thinking about and considering intersectional identities and experiences
Get an intro to the Child Welfare League of America Best Practices guidelines
Think about "What can I do?" and discuss some action steps
Take away resources
Violence/Victimization
Each episode of victimization, such as physical or vervbal harassment or abuse, increases the likelinhood of self-harming behaviro by 2.5 times the average (The Trevor Project)
Depression
In a study on depression and gay youth, researchers found depression strikes gay youth four to five times more severely than their non-gay peers (Youth Pride, Inc.)
83% of respondents in YPI's 1998 health survey considered themselves depressed (Youth Pride, Inc.)
Homelessness
LGBTQ youth are overrepresented in foster care, juvenile detention, and among homeless youth (Pflagnyc.org)
According to a 2006 report, between 20 and 40% of homeless youth in the US identify as LGB or T.
65% of 400 homeless LGBTQ youth report having been in a child welfare placement at some point in the past (Youth Pride, Inc.)
26% of gay youth are forced to leave home or are kicked out because of their sexual identities (Advocates for Youth)
Many youth report experiencing abuse from both family members and in shelters (Youth Pride, Inc.)
Suicide
Gay and lesbian youth are 2-3 times more likely to attempt suicide than heterosexual young people (Youth Pride, Inc.)
As many as 1 in 3 gay and lesbian youth have attempted suicide (Youth Pride, Inc.)
33.2% of transgender youth have attempted suicide (Youth Pride, Inc.)
* Highly rejected LGBT youth are:
8 times more likely to attempt suicide
6 times more likely to suffer from depression
3 times more likely to use illegal drugs
3 times more likely to contract HIV and STIs
(Center for American Progress)
LGBTQ Youth of Color
Youth of color are impacted by homophobia and racism. Risk factors which are higher for LGBTQ youth than straight youth are even higher for LGBTQ youth of color (Advocates for Youth)
The inner feelings of who a person is attracted to emotionally and/or physically, in relation to their own gender identity.
Sexual Orientation
Intersex
An umbrella term used to describe a variety of conditions in which a person is born with reproductive and/or sexual anatomy that doesn't seem to fit the medical definitions of female and male.
Cisgender
A person whose gender identity and expression are aligned with the gender they were assigned at birth.
Gender
A set of cultural identities, expressions and roles-codified as feminine and masculine-that are assigned to people, based upon the interpretation of their bodies, and more specifically, their sexual and reproductive anatomy.
GenderQueer
A person who has a gender identity and/or expression that does not conform to the gender they were assigned at birth. People who identify as "genderqueer" may or may not also identify as "transgender".
Oppression
Systems of power and privilege, based on bias, which benefit some social groups over others.
Ableism
A system of oppression that benefits able-bodies people at the expense of people with disabilities.
Coming Out
The ongoing process that an LGBT person goes through, to recognize their own identities pertaining to sexual orientation and/or gender identity and gender expression, and to be open about them with others.
Outing
The practice of revealing someone else's sexual orientation, gender identity, or HIV status without his/her permission.
Queer
An umbrella term used to describe a sexual orientation, gender identity or gender expression that does not conform to dominant societal norms. While it is used as a neutral, or even a positive term among many LGBT people today, historically "queer" was used as a derogatory slur.
Transgender/Trans
A person whose gender identity and/or expression are not aligned with the gender they were assigned at birth. "Transgender" is often used as an umbrella term encompassing a large number of identities related to gender nonconformity.
Pan/Omnisexual
A person who is emotionally and/or physically attracted to some people, regardless of their gender identity.
Ally
A member of the majority or dominant group who works to end oppression by recognizing their own privilege and supporting or advocating for the oppressed population.
Gender Nonconforming or Gender Variant
A person who has a gender identity and/or gender expression that does not conform to the gender they were assigned at birth. People who identify as "gender nonconforming" or "gender variant" may or may not also identify as "transgender".
Preferred Gender Pronouns (PGPs)
The pronoun or set of pronouns that a person would like others to call them by, when their proper name is not being used. Traditional exmples include "she/her/hers" or "he/him/his". Some people prefer gender-neutral pronouns, such as "ze/hir/hirs," "zie/zir/zirs,"...or "they/them/theirs". Some people prefer no pronouns at all.
References
Advocates for Youth, www.advocatesforyouth.org
Center for American Progress, www.americanprogress.org
GLSEN, www.glsen.org
Wilber, S., Ryan, C., & Makersamer, J. (2006). CWLA Best Practices Guidelines. Washington, DC: Child Welfare League of America.
Youth Pride, Inc. www.youthprideri.org
Activity
In 3 words or less, describe your gender.
Positive Trends!
In a recent poll, more than half of adults supported protecting the civil rights of LGBT people. In another survey, 95% of youth supported expanding hate crimes to cover gender identity and sexual orientation. (GLSEN)
A recent study of LGBT youth who receive gay-sensitive HIV prevention education in school showed they engaged in less risky sexual behavior than similar youth who did not receive such instruction. (GLSEN)
Research suggests that the term "coming-out" has been dropping in recent years. (GLSEN)
Share & Discuss
What did you list?
Why these words?
Is it ever different?
90% of LGBT students hear anti-LGBT comments in school (GLSEN)
Roughly 34% of LGBT youth report suffering physical violence from their parents as a result of their sexual orientation or gender identity (GLSEN)
More than 1 anti-transgender murder per month is reported in the USA (GenderPAC)
1 out of 6 students nationwide (grades 9-12) seriously considered suicide in the past year (CDC, 2011)
Straight or Heterosexual
A person who is emotionally and/or physically attracted to some members of another gender (specifically, a male-identified person who is attracted to some females or female-identified person who is attracted to some males).
Questioning
A person who is in the process of understanding and exploring what their sexual orientation and/or gender identity and gender expression might be.
LGBT or LGBTQ
An umbrella term referring to people who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual and/or transgender. Sometimes the acronym is written as LGBTQ, with the "Q" referring to those who identify as queer and/or questioning.
Classism
A system of oppression that benefits people with high and middle socioeconomic status at the expense of oeple with lower socioeconomic status.
Genderism
A system of oppression that benefits cisgender people at the expense of transgender and gender nonconforming people. Genderism may take the form of Transphobia, bias and discrimination towards transgender and gender noncomforming people.
Heterosexism
A system of oppression that benefits straight/heterosexual people at the expense of lesbian, gay and bisexual people. Heterosexism may take the form of Homophobia or Biphobia, bias and discrimination towards lesbian, gay and bisexual people.
Racism
A system of oppression that benefits white people at the expense of people of color.
Sexism
A system of oppression that benefits male-identified people at the expense of female-identified people.
A person who does not experience sexual attraction, but may experience other forms of attraction (e.g., intellectual, emotional).
Asexual
Gender Identity
How an individual identifies in terms of their gender.
Gender Expression
The multiple ways (e.g., behaviors, dress) in which a person may choose to communicate gender to oneself and/or to others.
Gender Binary
A socially constructed system of viewing gender as consisting solely of two categories, "male" and "female", in which no other possibilities for gender are believed to exist.
Identity
Identity is how we understand ourselves and often who we connect to and associate with. Each of us has a unique diversity of social identities based on sexual orientation, gender identity, race/ethnicity, socioeconomic status, religion, and other important parts of who we are. Those identities develop over time, intersect with each other and help give meaning to our lives.
Reclaimed Words
As language evolves, some individuals and communities choose to identify with terms that had previously been used as slurs against them. The words are "reclaimed" and given new meaning, often imbued with a sense of pride and reilience.
Comments,
Questions,
&
Discussion
Full transcript