Based on extensive research, recent events, and numerous first-person accounts, this revealing book illuminates both the challenges and triumphs of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender youth, and offers effective strategies for combating LGBT marginalization in our nation's schools and communities.
A 2009 nationwide survey showed that 85 percent of our nation's LGBT youth experience bullying at school. Abuse also occurs in our homes and communities. Recent suicides of LGBT youth testify to the devastating effects of this marginalization. But bullying and suicide are only part of the story; resilient LGBT youth and dedicated allies across the nation can transform schools and communities into safe spaces.
Safe Spaces: Making Schools and Communities Welcoming to LGBT Youth is the first book to offer a comprehensive view of the complex lives of LGBT youth of all ages, from kindergarten through college. Drawing on a wealth of research collected from first-person accounts of students, family, educators, and community members, the authors not only chronicle the struggles of LGBT youth but also describe models of inclusive school and community environments.
The authors address the breadth of experiences of LGBT youth—in and out of the classroom, at home and in the community, and in personal interactions with allies and antagonists. They also reveal how these young people, their friends and families, teachers, and dedicated allies stem the tide of LGBT exclusion. Most important, Safe Spaces offers action steps for readers who want to make their own homes, schools, and communities safe and welcoming spaces for LGBT youth.
• More than 80 real-life narratives, drawn from the stories of 100 people, including students, family members, educators, and community leaders
• A "Queerossary" of dozens of key terms, including multiple definitions for terms with specific meanings within the LGBT community
• A bibliography of academic, policy, and news materials related to LGBT issues
• More than 50 action steps readers can use to create safe spaces for LGBT youth
• Reflection Points provide questions and statements that offer readers an opportunity to reflect upon the ways a particular topic or issue relates to their lives
• An appendix listing LGBT resources
• Connects the stories of LGBT individuals from across the educational spectrum—kindergarten through college
• Engages readers with poignant quotes, anecdotes, factoids, and poems that reveal the real life struggles of LGBT people in their schools, families, and communities
• Points readers to a host of community and national resources where they can turn for further resources and support