ACLP offers the following educational content for child life professionals to learn and practice supporting LGBTQIA+ patients and families.
Every June, Pride Month offers a chance for celebration and equal rights activism for the LGBTQ+ community and their allies. But what happens when the rainbow-themed window displays and social media filters are put away? This course contains practical advice for organizations and individuals who want to live out inclusive values and remain committed to advocacy year-round.
1 PDU; Suggested Domain: DEI (domain of your choosing)
In honor of Pride Month, registration for these Child Life Learning Bite is free for ACLP Members from June 1 to June 30, 2023.
"As child life specialists, we can help advocate to adapt hospital policies to allow for the choice of mixed-gender rooms. This supports not only our own set of child life ethical principles of autonomy, beneficence, justice, and nonmaleficence, but also many hospital policies that include non-discrimination statements based on gender identity. Pronoun stickers and pride flags are a great start, but they are not enough. Gender affirming care requires us to think not only of individual interactions with patients and families, but of hospital design that promotes the development and autonomy of each patient and family."
Spring 2023 - Table of Contents
Recent research has discovered a commonality amongst emergency rooms throughout North America: a lack of gender-affirming care for children and youth who identify as transgender or gender nonconforming. From incorrect pronouns to inappropriate questions and actions from the medical team, pediatric emergency rooms are often emotionally unsafe. Child life specialists practicing in pediatric emergency rooms have a responsibility to enact change to provide safe spaces for this marginalized population.
What is the responsibility of a child life specialist when the ethical principles they are bound to uphold are in violation of the law? Since the beginning of 2021, there have been 91 state bills introduced that seek to restrict gender-affirming healthcare for youth under the age of 18. As advocates for children and youth, how do child life specialists navigate providing ethical care for patients within an uncertain legal landscape?
"Youth who are gender diverse often face challenges both at home and in the community, but they have shown the ability to be resilient, especially when they receive social support and acceptance. Child life professionals can make a difference within this sphere by advocating for supportive healthcare environments, promoting continuing education for staff, and providing resources to patients who identify as gender diverse."
Winter 2020-Table of Contents
Below are resources child life professionals can use to provide LGBTQIA+ representation in playrooms and activity centers.
Pride Activity Sheets
These free activity sheet templates can be used to celebrate pride and/or in conjunction with the books listed on this page. Download the templates here.
Developed by experts in the fields of early childhood and activism against injustice, this topic-driven board book offers clear, concrete language and beautiful imagery."
Suggested age: 2+
"Michael is a mixed-race gay teen growing up in London. All his life, he's navigated what it means to be Greek-Cypriot and Jamaican--but never quite feeling Greek or Black enough. As he gets older, Michael's coming out is only the start of learning who he is and where he fits in. When he discovers the Drag Society, he finally finds where he belongs--and the Black Flamingo is born."
Content Warning: Homophobia and Racism
Suggested age: 14+
A 2020 ACLP Bulletin article by Nikki Orkoskey, MA, CCLS offers the following advice when it comes to decorating a playroom: "Playrooms and activity centers should be decorated with regard to diversity and include pictures of different types of families inclusive of diverse gender identities." These printable posters can be used to show your playroom or activity center is a safe place for LGBTQIA+ kids and families.
Download the vertical poster now. Download the horizontal poster now
A Game Changer: Playing with Pronouns Card Deck
Engage children with an educational card deck featuring gender inclusive cards. All kinds of games can be played to familiarize kids with pronouns, promote social-emotional learning, and practice skills like matching and sorting.
Learn more and purchase now.
This ACLP affinity group is for those in the child life profession who are a part of the LGBTQIA+ community*. This meet up is an informal gathering and opportunity for people to share their identities in a safe and friendly environment while also creating connections. This is not a training or town hall. It will not be recorded, and there will not be a summary or notes released at a later date. The meet up is for both ACLP members and non-members, including aspiring child life professionals.
The next LGBTQIA+ affinity group meet-up is in-person at the 2023 Child Life Conference in Grapevine, Texas.
Once a month, the affinity group meets via zoom. 2023 dates are as follows:
To register, email email@example.com
*Allies of these communities are asked to respect the need to have a closed event.