Skip to main content
U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government

The Legal Rights of Young People in State Custody: What Child Welfare and Juvenile Justice Professionals Need to Know When Working with LGBT Youth

The legal rights of LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender) youth are discussed through the use of scenarios that show professionals in child welfare and juvenile justice what they may experience working with this population. This paper is divided into four parts: the Constitutional right to safety-- in foster care and juvenile detention and correctional facilities; other constitutional rights-the right to equal protection, and First Amendment rights; state non-discrimination laws; and conclusion. “Agencies and facilities that provide care to youth in state custody must educate themselves on the needs of LGBT youth and the scope of their civil rights” (p. 11).