There are so few resources for those who work with LGBTQ youth in foster care. However, many LGBTQ youth are ejected from their homes, or leave due to lack of acceptance from their family. Worse, gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender youth often experience a whole new horror in foster care can group homes. According to “Justice for All”, a report on New York youth in the justice system (full text available here) 100% of New York City queer youth in group homes interviewed for the study experienced verbal harassment for their sexual identity and an astounding 78% experienced physical violence. According to the National Center for Lesbian Rights report more than half of LGBTQ New York homeless youth spent some time living on the streets because it was safer for them than their group home. As some of the most vulnerable of our population, homeless LGBTQ youth often have literally no where safe to turn.
In light of this, a new, free film; We Are…GLBTQ is a great resource on LGBTQ youth in foster care.
The Safe Schools Coalition says:
It’s easily the BEST video about LGBTQ youth in recent memory. It’s about LGBTQ youth in foster care, featuring the wonderfully articulate, diverse voices of a dozen or so LGBTQ current and former foster children, with guest appearances by some adult experts. It is not about only trans issues, but some of the youth do explain their transgender identities. It’s an excellent training tool intended for case workers, foster parents and others serving out-of-home youth, but absolutely great too for school counselors, nurses, social workers, teachers, physicians, parents …any adult who cares about youth…and for any youth in the child welfare system.
Order free copies from Carolyn Jones, Professional Development Unit, Children’s Administration, Department of Social & Health Services, MS 45710, Olympia, WA 98502; Tel. 360-902-0215; Fax. 360-7588; Email. ZOCA300@dshs.wa.gov.
Watch We are GLBTQ online (42 min) at: http://www1.dshs.wa.gov/video/ca/New%20GLBTQ.asx