LA County Preparedness Scan
Commissioned by a Board of Supervisors mandate in October 2015, this Scan of Los Angeles County’s efforts to provide high-quality, effective services and supports for LGBTQ youth and reduce disparities they face emerged out of series of facilitated convenings with leadership from 11 youth-relevant County departments.
The Scan included an assessment of staff knowledge, comfort, attitudes, experiences and awareness of system supports (policy, data collection, training) related to providing services for LGBTQ youth. Survey and open-ended responses were obtained in all these domains, and sample policy and data collection documents were collected. This Executive Summary highlights a few of the key findings in the main preparedness domains, identified overarching patterns and priority recommendations.
Key findings include
- The majority of respondents felt knowledgeable about LGBTQ youth issues and comfortable explaining sexual orientation terminology.
- However, a test of SOGIE related terminology demonstrated that actual knowledge is lower than perceived knowledge.
- A higher proportion of respondents reported having less knowledge about the needs of LGBTQ parents and transgender or gender-nonconforming youth than knowledge about sexual minority youth.
- Eighty-six percent (86%) of the workforce surveyed knew their departments served LGBTQ children, but only 40% could give estimates of how many children were served overall and even fewer (10%) could answer questions about how many of those youth were LGBTQ.
- With the exception of LA County Department of Education’s extensive SB48 compliance work, almost no interviewed managers were aware of any of the eight State policies that support equity for LGBTQ youth.
- Overall, the majority of respondents felt their environment was at least somewhat welcoming to LGBTQ people.
- However, LGBT staff scored their work environment as less welcoming than non-LGBT staff, indicating that what might appear welcoming to non-LGBT people may not actually be so.