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LGBTQ+ Affirmative Advocacy Certificate

LGBTQ+ Affirmative Advocacy Certificate: Advocate and work affirmatively with the LGBTQ+ community.

What? LGBTQ+ Affirmative Advocacy Certificate: Advocate and Work Affirmatively with the LGBTQ+ community.

A certificate based on the premise that the LGBTQ+ community has not only been underserved but even damaged and mistreated by the mental health system.

Fielding proudly presents this certificate to further solidify our commitment to social justice, advocacy, and equity to access effective and affirmative mental health services to the LGBTQ+ community.

The certificate emphasizes learn-today-use-tomorrow understanding of how social, cultural, legal, historical and political dynamics impact, in many cases negatively, the lives of LGBTQ+ individuals, couples and families. Competent, ethical, culturally-informed,  and affirmative best practices in prevention, intervention, and advocacy strategies to enhance work immediately with this population are emphasized. Participants learn about affectional orientation and gender as they intersect with other identities including race, ethnicity, ability, age and spirituality.

Where?  Online

Who? Persons working in community agencies, hospitals, homeless shelters, crisis centers, criminal justice systems, schools, etc. Anyone who is working with the LGBTQ+ community.

Why? Here’s why this certificate is needed particularly in California:

The Human Rights Campaign ( HRC) Foundation, in partnership with nine California civil rights and education organizations, released the 2019 California LGBTQ Youth Report,  detailing the experiences of LGBTQ students in California. The report analyzed responses from more than 1,700 young people from California, ranging in age from 13 to 17, who participated in HRC’s online survey.

The results indicated that even with California state laws explicitly protecting LGBTQ students:

  • Only 10 percent of LGBTQ youth in California say all of their school staff are supportive of LGBTQ students;
  • Only 32 percent of LGBTQ youth in California always feel safe in the classroom;
  • Half of all respondents have been teased or bullied because of their actual or perceived affectional orientation or gender identity, and 28 percent of LGBTQ youth in California have been threatened with physical violence at least once because of their affectional orientation or gender identity;
  • Forty-three percent of transgender students can NEVER use the bathroom/locker room at school that matches their gender identity

Additional data: According to a 2019 nationwide survey conducted by Gay, Lesbian, Straight Educators Network (GLSEN) in partnership with the American Council for School Social Work (ACSSW), the American School Counselor Association (ASCA) and the School Social Work Association of America (SSWAA):

  • 37% of mental health professional never received any formal training on LGBTQ student issues during their career
  • 76% of school mental health professionals received little to no preparation on working with LGBTQ youth
  • 87% of school counselors, psychologists and social  workers believe it is their responsibility to provide supportive counseling to LGBTQ students, yet most receive little to no related training

Student Learning Outcomes

Students will:

  • Apply competencies for working with LGBTQ+ individuals and families

  • Demonstrate competencies for working with LGBTQ+ communities

Program Benefits

  • Join a community of learners from across the world

  • Gain the knowledge and skills, grounded in cultural competencies and social justice principles, to be an effective counselor

  • Skills include communication, assessment, diagnosis, and treatment planning

  • Study from your location; no need to move

  • Personalized attention from faculty 



LGBTQ+ Affirmative Advocacy Certificate

Apply by March 25, 2019 to start in Summer 2019

Apply Now