This training guide is designed to enhance the capacity of group care facilities to provide comprehensive, respectful, and supportive services to transgender and gender non-conforming youth. The author discusses the social, psychological, and physical health needs of these young people, and the challenges they face related to their gender identity. The guide sets forth best practices for working with transgender and gender-nonconforming youth and for changing the culture of group facilities, including implementing practice guidelines and training for staff. A focus on knowledgeable health care is key. Youth who pursue hormone therapy without medical supervision are at increased risk for contracting HIV or developing life threatening medical problems secondary to shared needle use, inappropriate dosages, or poor quality hormones. Interpretations of relevant court cases are also included to help agencies meet their legal obligations in serving these young people.
The guide's appendices include a glossary of common terms and definitions, a list of health care and legal services providers, and other advocacy resources related to transgender and gender non-conforming young people.
Youth facilities and service providers should also refer to the Teen SENSE Model Policies and Standards, which set forth the minimum requirements that facilities should meet in order to appropriately address the sexual health care needs of youth in custody.