Juvenile Justice System Work and Resources 

Pride Justice Resource Center 

The National SOGIE Center is proud to partner with the National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges on The Pride Justice Resource Center. The center provides training and technical assistance opportunities for juvenile justice practitioners and stakeholders to enhance their capacity, knowledge, and skills to improve and strengthen overall outcomes for justice-involved Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer/Questioning, and Two-Spirit plus youth. These resources include supporting system change, family engagement, and acceptance, identifying gaps in knowledge related to LGBTQ2S+ and the intersections of multiple identities.


An Introduction to LGBTQ2S+ Justice-Involved Youth

This 60-minute webinar went over important information on disparities, outcomes, and best practices related to lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, questioning, and Two-Spirit (LGBTQ2S+) youth in juvenile justice settings. Presenters will discuss best practices related to serving the population and provide guidance on equitable treatment in justice settings. Viewers will be able to describe the unique needs of LGBTQ2S+ youth in the juvenile justice system and identify the resources available to juvenile justice system professionals to effectively support LGBTQ2S+ youth. 

Frequently Asked Questions About Collecting Sexual Orientation, Gender Identity Data in Juvenile Placements and Juvenile Detention Facilities 

Check out this Frequently Asked Questions tool that the National SOGIE Center developed with the Pride Justice Resource Center. By collecting SOGI information, facilities and staff will be better able to make appropriate decisions about placements, resource allocation, case planning, and programming for this population. Collecting SOGI data can help staff provide appropriate services to youth. This document offers answers to frequently asked questions related to asking about SOGI and how to collect the information safely to inform placement and services.

Safe and Affirming Data Collection About Justice-Involved LGBTQ2S+ Youth

Youth who identify as Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, and Two-Spirit (LGBTQ2S+) are disproportionately represented in the juvenile justice system and have unique needs and challenges, yet many juvenile justice professionals are unsure of whether there are any LGBTQ2S+ youth in their system. Ensuring all youth in the juvenile justice system feel safe, affirmed, and supported requires juvenile justice professionals to ask youth about all aspects of their identity. In this webinar, faculty discuss how to conduct data collection about justice-involved LGBTQ2S+ youth in a safe and affirming manner.  

The Influence of Juvenile Justice Workforce’s Knowledge, Attitudes, and Beliefs on Behaviors Toward Youth with Diverse Sexual Orientations, Gender Identities, and Expressions

The study, conducted and written by the Principle Investigator of the National SOGIE Center, Marlene Matarese, et al., (2023), helps understand the influence that knowledge, attitudes, and beliefs about youth with diverse sexual orientations, gender identities, and expressions (SOGIE) may have on juvenile justice staff members’ provision of protection and support for these youth. When youth with diverse SOGIE are not protected by the workforce in charge of their care, they are at greater risk for poorer future outcomes as they transition into adulthood. Survey responses from 237 juvenile justice staff members in a Mid-Atlantic state were examined using both univariate and multivariate analyses. Findings indicate that respondents who exhibited greater knowledge about these populations and those who had ever had an LGBT youth on their caseload were significantly more likely to report that they would demonstrate protective and supportive behaviors toward youth with diverse SOGIE. At the same time, those who exhibited more negative attitudes about LGBT populations were significantly less likely to report that they would demonstrate protective and supportive behaviors toward youth with diverse SOGIE. Read the press release. 

There’s No Place Like Home –  Working with Families of LGBTQ2S+ Youth in Systems

Youth who identify as Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, and Two-Spirit (LGBTQ2S+) are disproportionately represented in the juvenile justice system and have unique needs and challenges, including discrimination and threats to their physical and emotional wellbeing. It is extremely important to understand how to strengthen protective factors for LGBTQ2S+ youth, particularly family connections. In this webinar, you will understand why supporting the families of LGBTQ2S+ youth is so important to ensure the wellbeing of their LGBTQ2S+ children. 

A Guide to Juvenile Detention Reform: Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Youth in the Juvenile Justice System

This practice guide is a response to that demand and: provides an overview of key concepts and terminology related to SOGIE; summarizes the research on the effect of stigma and bias on the health and well-being of LGBT youth, the drivers contributing to their disproportionate involvement in the justice system and the harmful and unfair practices to which they are subjected in the system; identifies policies and procedures to prohibit discrimination, prevent harm and promote fair and equitable treatment of LGBT youth who are arrested and referred to juvenile justice agencies; and provides guidance on policies and practices required to ensure the safety and well-being of LGBT youth in detention facilities.

Juvenile Facilities Checklist For Defenders: Advocating For The Safety And Well-Being of Transgender, Gender Non-Conforming, And Intersex Young People

The National Juvenile Defender Center (NJDC) produced a publication entitled “Juvenile Facilities Checklist for Defenders” to assist defenders in monitoring conditions and practices in detention and correctional facilities and other types of secure and non-secure facilities. The checklist provides defenders with the necessary tools to advocate for their clients in these facilities to prevent unnecessary or inappropriate placement, reduce the period of confinement, or intervene to challenge harmful conditions or practices on the young person’s behalf.

LGBTQ+ Youth of Color Impacted by the Child Welfare and Juvenile Justice Systems: A Research Agenda

This report is a collection of working papers focused on understanding what we know and what we need to better understand about the lives and outcomes of system-involved youth who are both LGBTQ+ and racial/ethnic minorities.

Model Anti-Harassment and Nondiscrimination Policy for Child Welfare or Juvenile Justice Agencies

This model anti-harassment and non-discrimination policy is for child welfare and juvenile justice agencies who wish to adopt a policy that would prohibit all forms of harassment, create a safe environment for all youth and service providers, and ensure that all youth have equal access to all available services, placement, care, treatment, and benefits provided by the agency.

Model Policy:Transgender, Gender Nonconforming, and Intersex Youth in Confinement Facilities

The purpose of this model policy is to address operational practices that promote the safety, dignity, and well-being of TGNCI youth in confinement facilities. Although many of the provisions apply to all youth, the policy was created specifically to address the unique needs and vulnerabilities of TGNCI youth. The model policy is designed for broad application in a wide range of confinement facilities (e.g., detention facilities, residential treatment centers, shelter homes).

LGBTQ+ Youths in The Juvenile Justice System

This Literature review from Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (2014) offers insights into what the research says about LGBTQ+ youth in Juvenile Justice Systems.

National Technical Assistance Center for the Education of Youth Who Are Neglected, Delinquent, or At-Risk Fact Sheet: Improving Services for Youth Who are LGBT in Juvenile Justice Systems

To promote the safe, inclusive treatment of youth who are lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) in juvenile justice systems, this fact sheet serves as a resource to enhance the capacity of State and local administrators and practitioners to improve policies and practices. This document explores the experiences of youth who are LGBT generally, their entry into juvenile justice systems and their experiences in these systems, and recommendations for policy and practice. Additional resources to improve juvenile justice services are presented at the end of the document.

Toward Equity

This training curriculum was made to help build understanding of sexual orientation, gender identity, and gender expression, and to develop professionals’ competency to serve LGBTQ+ young people in the Juvenile Justice (JJ) System. It includes a trainer’s guide, example case studies, and important content that should be considered for all JJ trainings that are focused on LGBTQ+ populations. 

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