LGBTQ Rights Project

LGBTQ Rights Project

The Challenge:

Like all children in foster care, lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and questioning (LGBTQ) youth are affected by the elimination of services, overburdened Family Courts, and an often dysfunctional child welfare system. Unlike other children in foster care, however, LGBTQ youth must also contend with discrimination based on sexual and/or gender identity; lack of service providers who are sensitive to the particular needs of LGBTQ youth; questions about whether to “come out” or openly acknowledge sexual or gender identity while in foster care; and difficulty finding supportive LGBTQ youth and adults.

LFC’s Response:

LFC’s LGBTQ Rights Project consists of two attorneys who collaborate with LFC’s highly skilled social workers on each of their cases. The objectives of the project are to: 1) assess the needs of gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and questioning youth in foster care; 2) develop and implement advocacy plans both for individual young people and for system-wide improvements; and to 3) inform LGBTQ youth in foster care of their rights through workshops and distribution of our You Are Not Alone handbook for LGBTQ youth in foster care, which includes a resource guide of programs and services specifically for LGBTQ youth.

Shardee"Shardee begged for a transfer to a trans-friendly placement."

Read Shardee's Success Story

In order to preserve client confidentiality, names and other details have been changed. Volunteer models appear in all photographs that depict LFC clients. Photographs courtesy Ben Fink Shapiro Studio and Jasmin Ortiz.