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Helping Families Support LGBTQIA+ Youth

Join us for a Live Webinar on September 1, 2023 from 1-3:10 pm EDT
2 CE hours available for behavioral health clinicians

As clinicians, we know that it is essential for queer youth to experience support from their families because it can have a significant impact on their mental health and well-being. Unfortunately, queer youth often face social stigma, discrimination, and isolation, which can lead to depression, anxiety, and other behavioral health issues. Having a supportive family can help to mitigate some of these negative effects by providing a safe and accepting environment where queer youth can be themselves without fear of rejection or judgment. Additionally, family support can help to increase academic and career success for queer youth. In fact, studies have shown that family acceptance is associated with higher levels of self-esteem, better grades, and increased likelihood of completing higher education.  Clinicians are often a pivotal component in helping families increase their support for their LGBTQIA+ child.  By engaging collaboratively with families, clinicians can promote open communication, strengthen family bonds, and foster empathy and understanding in family systems. Clinicians can also help to break down stereotypes and reduce prejudice and discrimination.

Join behavioral health expert and DEI consultant Chris McLaughlin, MSW, LCSW as he provides best practice tools, tips, and techniques to help clinicians become more intentional in supporting families in caring for their LGBTQIA+ child.

 Learning Objectives:

  • Define terms associated with LGBTQIA+ youth
  • Review several key concepts related to LGBTQIA+ youth 
  • Introduce a model of coming out for LGBTQIA+ youth
  • Bring awareness of the risk factors associated with LGBTQIA+ youth
  • Outline best practice clinical approaches for the behavior health treatment of LGBTQIA+ youth
  • Educate on concepts of Pronouns/Dead Names
  • Review concepts of Trauma-Informed Care and Grief and Loss theories
  • Provide overview of family rejection vs. family acceptance
  • Apply Trauma-Focused CBT principals in clinical work with families of LGBTQIA+ youth
  • Introduce strategies to enhance family acceptance 
  • Describe ethical issues that might arise when working with LGBTQIA+ youth and families
Chris McLaughlin headshot

Christopher McLaughlin

Chris McLaughlin, MSW, LCSW, (he/him/his), is the Executive Director of the Maine Chapter of the National Association of Social Workers (NASW) and owner of Inspired Consulting Group, LLC. He obtained his BA in Psychology and his MSW from the University of Maine. Chris has spent more than 20+ years as a provider and a leader in behavioral health services for youth and families across a variety of clinical settings. Chris is an adjunct faculty member at the University of Maine and Husson University in Bangor.

Additionally, Chris served for four years on the Maine Board of Social Work Licensing and is a member of both the NASW and the Society for Social Work Leadership in Health Care (SSWLHC), where he is the current Maine Chapter President, and he is a member of the National Board. Chris holds additional certifications from Cornell University. Nationally, he was SSWLHC’s 2019 recipient of the Eleanor Clark Award and was named Health Care Social Worker of the Year in 2019 by the Maine Hospital Association and the Maine Chapter of the SSWLHC. In 2020, Chris was awarded the Alumni of the Year distinction from the University of Maine School of Social Work.

For organizations seeking further guidance on LGBTQ+ issues, Chris offers a consultation service to walk organizations through essential competencies that move them closer toward being LGBTQ+ affirming providers. You can learn more about Chris’ professional background and interests here.

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