Social Work | Development Issues for Gay/Lesbians
S300 | 9483 | Tba

Gay, lesbian and bisexual (GL&B) people constitute an important
presence in American society.  Yet, the GL&B population is confronted
with a system of inequality due in part to its small number,
geographic dispersion and prejudiced societal attitudes. The results
is that GL&B people face serious issues related to lack of legal
protection, violence, and limited political representation.
They are denied full participation in a wide range of social
institutions including family life, religion, education, employment,
recreation, the military and many others. Research shows that this
social environment places GL&B people at increased risk of isolation,
poor school performance, mental health problems and even suicide. The
complexity of the developmental challenges facing the GL&B population
has important implications for social work and other helping
professionals working with this group across practice settings.  This
course will provide an overview of GL&B developmental issues from a
social work person-in-environment perspective. Theory and research
regarding sexual orientation will be examined. Topics such as GL&B
identity formation, definitions of homophobia, heterosexism will be
explored. Class participants are expected to develop knowledge of the
history of GL&B civil rights movement and demonstrate an awareness of
current issues for this group. Diversity and life span issues will
also be addressed.