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May 2023Vol. 24, No. 4Providing Culturally Responsive Services to LGBTQ+ Youth and Their Families

Compared with the heterosexual and cisgender population, individuals of who identify as LGBTQ+ (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, questioning, intersex, Two-Spirit, and other diverse sexual orientations, gender identities, and expressions) are disproportionately affected by mental health issues, substance use disorders, and suicidality. To address and decrease these behavioral health disparities, the Center of Excellence on LGBTQ+ Behavioral Health Equity was established to implement change strategies in LGBTQ+-serving systems through evidence-based training, coaching, and technical assistance. 

The center provides an extensive list of live, recorded, and self-paced learning sessions for practitioners, such as “Providing Culturally Relevant Services to Families of LGBTQ+ Youth,” that are free and publicly available. In that hour-long webinar recording, available on the Recorded Opportunities page of the center’s website, presenters discuss the following:

  • The importance of having culturally responsive services and strategies for working with LGBTQ+ young people and their families
  • Case examples from the Youth Acceptance Project, which focused on supporting families of LGBTQ+ young people involved in, or at risk of entering, foster care
  • The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) guide titled Adapting Evidence-Based Practices for Under-Resourced Populations

Eligible learning sessions offer free continuing education credits (accredited by the Council on Social Work Education). A general, noncredit Certificate of Attendance is also available upon completion of a postwebinar evaluation. To view session recordings or join future live webinars, sign up for a free account on the center’s website.

The Center of Excellence on LGBTQ+ Behavioral Health Equity is part of the National Center for Youth with Diverse Sexual Orientation, Gender Identity & Expression (The National SOGIE Center) at the Innovations Institute at the University of Connecticut School of Social Work and is funded through a grant from SAMHSA.