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Let's Get This Straight: A Gay- and Lesbian-Affirming Approach to Child Welfare

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The first book to approach child welfare from a gay- and lesbian-affirming perspective, Let´s Get This Straight uncovers and challenges the pervasive presence of "heterocentrism" within the social work profession. It draws upon case examples and in-depth interviews to illustrate the degree to which myths and stereotypes about gay and lesbian youth detrimentally affect those most in need of assistance.Gerald P. Mallon uses an ecological perspective to highlight the five areas of child welfare: (1) family support /...
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Overview

The first book to approach child welfare from a gay- and lesbian-affirming perspective, Let´s Get This Straight uncovers and challenges the pervasive presence of "heterocentrism" within the social work profession. It draws upon case examples and in-depth interviews to illustrate the degree to which myths and stereotypes about gay and lesbian youth detrimentally affect those most in need of assistance.Gerald P. Mallon uses an ecological perspective to highlight the five areas of child welfare: (1) family support / preservation; (2) protection from abuse and neglect; (3) adoption services; (4) out-of-home care services; and (5) the development of foster and adoptive homes. He discusses the implications of this ecological perspective for service delivery, the impact of laws and legislation, and the role gay and lesbian professionals can play in these areas to provide unbiased care to lesbian, gay, and bisexual clients.
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Editorial Reviews

Jeane W. Anastas
Everyone concerned with child welfare in the United States today should read this book. Based on original research and years of work with child welfare agencies throughout the nation, Mallon addresses child welfare professionals clearly and directly about affirmative and effective practice with the gay and lesbian people they serve. Numerous case vignettes bring the practice principles and the unmet human needs vividly to life.
Joan Laird
Lesbian and gay children and adults have been in child welfare´s closet for generations. Gary Mallon opens the door wide on the ways this population has been marginalized and even mistreated in the child welfare system, and takes a comprehensive, family-centered, ecological approach that addresses the problems and needs in each sector, from prevention to protection to family healing, as well as to foster home, adoption, and residential placement. Rich with case examples that represent diverse and complex situations, this book should be required for anyone with any connections to child welfare, inside and outside of the system. It provides an invaluable resource for administrators, practitioners, researchers, policy-makers, and students.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780231111362
  • Publisher: Columbia University Press
  • Publication date: 2/28/2000
  • Pages: 224
  • Product dimensions: 6.26 (w) x 9.35 (h) x 0.71 (d)

Meet the Author

Gerald P. Mallon is assistant professor of social work at Hunter College. His writings include We Don't Exactly Get the Welcome Wagon: Experiences of Gay and Lesbian Adolescents in Child Welfare Systems. He lives in New York City.

Columbia University Press

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Table of Contents

Preface IX
Acknowledgments XIII
Introduction: Reinventing Child Welfare Services 1
1 Competent Child Welfare Services for Gay/Lesbian Children, Youth, and Their Families 13
2 Keeping Families Together: Family-Centered Services and Issues of Sexual Orientation 35
3 Protecting Gay/Lesbian Children and Youth: Issues of Abuse, Neglect, and Familial Violence 57
4 Sexual Orientation and the Law: Legal Issues in Child Welfare 79
5 Gays and Lesbians as Adoptive and Foster Parents 93
6 Meeting the Needs of Gay/Lesbian Children and Youth in Out-of-Home-Care Placements 109
7 Runaways and Homeless Gay and Lesbian Youth 127
8 Locked in the Child Welfare Closet-Who's Got the Key? 143
References 153
Index 183
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