A Cross-National Review of Policies and Practices Affecting LGBTQ+ Youth in Child Welfare

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This chapter analyses how policies and practices in the U.S. and the Netherlands affect the lives of LGBTQ+ youth. We first present an overview of the situation of LGBTQ+ youth in the child welfare system (CWS), and the national and administrative policies and practices in both countries. Despite the gains of the last years in terms of LGBTQ+ rights, we face a current backlash of anti-LGBTQ+ laws and an increase in anti-LGBTQ+ rhetoric. These anti-LGBTQ+ movements impact the well-being of all LGBTQ+ youth, but especially that of LGBTQ+ youth in care. Care professionals responsible for youths’ well-being are also exposed and influenced by this anti-LGBTQ+ rhetoric, affecting their willingness to offer affirmative care. Secondly, we explore recent studies with LGBTQ+ youth in the CWS in the Netherlands that shed light on the ways to create safe and affirming care environments. Thirdly, based on a study with LGBTQ+ youth in the CWS in the U.S., we explore youth perceptions and recommendations to create a safe and affirming environment. The chapter ends with a number of recommendations for policymakers, care professionals and agencies to ensure that care environments offer appropriate care for LGBTQ+ youth.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationChild-Friendly Perspectives on Gender and Sexual Diversity
Subtitle of host publicationBeyond Adultcentrism
EditorsJose Antonio Langarita, Ana Cristina Santos, Marisela Montenegro, Mojca Urek
Place of PublicationLondon
Number of pages19
ISBN (Electronic)9781003294719
ISBN (Print)9781032279305
Publication statusPublished - Mar-2023

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