Primary Sources: What Nonprofits Can Learn From Schools About Serving Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Young People

logo, Safe Schools

Supportive Social Services for LGBT Youth: Lessons From the Safe Schools Movement” (abstract), The Prevention Researcher, Vol. 17 No. 4, November 2010.

What it's about: The “safe schools movement” promotes inclusive education policies for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender students. Youth-serving agencies wishing to better serve lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender youth can look to the schools for ideas and inspiration.

Why read it: The article takes a holistic approach, arguing for the importance of creating safe and supportive environments that promote positive development for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender young people.

Biggest take away for youth workers: A few of the ways the safe schools movement has been successful in promoting healthy development for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender students include:

  • Implementing nondiscrimination and anti-bullying policies that specifically include actual or perceived sexual orientation
  • Training staff on how to effectively intervene when harassment takes place
  • Creating support groups, clubs and gay-straight alliances
  • Including in program curricula discussion of the issues lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender young people face

Additional reference: The author includes examples of two curricula to help youth workers implement supportive policies for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender young people: Lambda Legal’s Moving the Margins: Training Curriculum for Child Welfare Services with Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Questioning (LGBTQ) Youth in Out-of-Home Care (PDF, 2,556 KB), and the University of Arizona’s Understanding and Supporting LGBT Youth (PDF, 54KB). In addition, read NCFY’s “Serving Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Questioning Youth With Open Arms.”

(Publications discussed here do not necessarily reflect the views of NCFY, FYSB or the Administration for Children and Families. Go to the NCFY literature database for abstracts of this and other publications.) 








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