In Kim Pearson’s talk at the LGBT Center on May 23, 2011, she mentioned that NASW had one of the most comprehensive policy statements on gender non-conforming individuals. Below is an abstract of the public policy statement. One of the many reasons I’m proud to be a social worker!
Transgender and Gender Identity Issues
NASW supports curriculum policies in schools of social work that eliminate discrimination against people of diverse gender and encourages the implementation of continuing education programs on practice and policy issues relevant to gender diversity. In addition, to foster public awareness, NASW supports collaboration with organizations and groups supportive of the transgender community to develop programs to increase public awareness of the mistreatment and discrimination experienced by transgender people and of the contributions they make to society. NASW also urges development within schools and other child and youth services agencies of programs that educate students, faculty, and staff about gender diversity and the needs of transgender children and youth. Further, among other activities concerning transgender expression, NASW advocates for:NASW recognizes that there is considerable diversity in gender expression and identity among our population and believes that people of diverse gender — including those sometimes called “transgender” — should be afforded the same respect and rights as any other person. Discrimination and prejudice toward anyone are socially, emotionally, physically, and economically damaging. A nonjudgmental attitude toward gender diversity enables social workers to provide maximum support and services to those whose gender departs from the expected norm. Social workers must encourage the development of supportive practice environments for those struggling with gender expression and identity issues, including both clients and colleagues.
- education and support of parents of intersex children;
- development of and participation in coalitions to lobby for the civil rights of people of diverse gender expression and identity;
- increased funding for education, treatment services, and research;
- repeal of laws and discriminatory practices, especially in employment; and
- adoption of laws to facilitate individuals in identifying with and expressing their gender choice in education, housing, inheritance, health and other types of insurance, child custody, property, and other areas