• October 2009
  • Vol. 10, No. 8

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Improving the Legal System's Approach to LGBTQ Youth In Foster Care

Addressing the barriers to safety, permanency, and well-being for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and questioning (LGBTQ) youth is the focus of the Opening Doors Project: Improving the Legal System's Approach to LGBTQ Youth in Foster Care. During this 3-year project, staff of the American Bar Association (ABA) Center on Children and the Law aim to:

  • Increase the legal community’s awareness of LGBTQ youth in foster care and the unique issues they face
  • Provide the legal community with advocacy tools to successfully represent these youth

Resources available on the project's website include a 1-hour webcast and PowerPoint slides, an overview of training and technical assistance, summaries of research conducted on attorneys' and judges' attitudes toward LGBTQ youth, and links to additional resources for advocates. In addition, published articles on such issues as the role of attorneys and judges, improving attitudes toward LGBTQ youth, and legal advocacy and decision-making are available for download.

Also available on the site is ordering information for the manual Opening Doors for LGBTQ Youth in Foster Care: A Guide for Lawyers and Judges. Written by ABA staffers Mimi Laver and Andrea Khoury, this guide provides tools for lawyers and judges to aid their advocacy and decision-making on behalf of LGBTQ youth.


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