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TeenSense: Model Staff Training Standards Focusing on the Needs of LGBTQ Youth in State Custody

NCJ Number
Date Published
23 pages
These Teen SENSE Model Staff Training Standards are intended to ensure that all staff of foster care, detention, and other government-operated and regulated youth facilities are prepared to understand and protect the health and well-being of all youth, regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity.
The standards are intended to be used as a guide for staff at every level of child welfare and juvenile justice, including medical service providers and security personnel. The standards provide for training on the rights of all youth to freedom from all forms of discrimination and to health, sexual, and reproductive autonomy and safety. The standards also support training in how to communicate with and advise youth. In addition, the staff training standards address the ability of staff to identify and counter the effects of stigma or discrimination against HIV-positive youth and lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and questioning youth (LGBTQ). Under the proposed standards, staff serving youth under State custody are trained in their responsibilities to provide comprehensive physical and mental health services to all youth in a respectful manner, which includes maintaining confidentiality and an atmosphere of safety and acceptance. The 12 educational objectives of the training standards are listed, and an appendix discusses sexuality and healthy relationships, sexual orientation, and gender roles and identity.