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June 2013Vol. 14, No. 5Managing Sensitive Information

When working with children and youth who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender (LGBT), there exists a fine line between the need for asking children and youth to disclose this personal information in order to be adequately served, and the need to protect their privacy. The Center for the Study of Social Policy (CSSP) developed a set of standards for managing information related to the sexual orientation and gender identity of children in child welfare.
The guide includes an introduction and three sections, the latter including five subsections:

  • Guiding Principles
  • Laying the Groundwork for Implementation
  • Information Guidelines
    • Collecting Information for Individual Case Planning
    • Collecting Information for Agency Assessment and Planning
    • Recording Information
    • Disclosing Information
    • Institutionalizing Practice

The guidelines were developed by CSSP in partnership with the Putting Pride into Practice Project (P4). P4 is a 3-year effort by Family Builders by Adoption, in partnership with the California Department of Social Services, to implement Child Welfare League of America's Best Practice Guidelines for Serving LGBT Youth in Out of Home Care. CSSP released the guidelines in January 2013 and is in the process of securing funds to lead field testing with up to three child welfare jurisdictions.

Guidelines for Managing Information Related to the Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity and Expression of Children in Child Welfare Systems is available on the CSSP website: (417 KB)