This training will provide participants with the language, cultural context, and information to assist them in supporting child welfare-involved LGBTQ survivors of domestic violence and enhancing family safety and inclusivity. This training will begin with a discussion of LGBTQ vocabulary and terminology before delving into the dynamics of domestic violence in LGBTQ relationships. Next, we will explore the specific barriers and threats LGBTQ survivors face, and finally, participants will brainstorm strategies for advocacy specific to LGBTQ youth involved in the child welfare system, with a focus on inclusivity and safety.

Research shows that approximately 3.3 to 10 million children witness the abuse of a parent or adult caregiver each year in the United States. Research also indicates that children exposed to domestic violence are at an increased risk of being abused or neglected. For this reason, enhancing parenting skills is one of the primary areas of focus for child welfare and the courts. Unfortunately, these services are not always appropriate or provided in a way that enhances family safety. In this course, facilitators will define domestic violence, discuss the dynamics of power and control, explore the importance of initial and ongoing assessment in cases involving domestic violence, address common beliefs about survivors of domestic violence as parents, and identify best practices when providing parenting services to families experiencing domestic violence.