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Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, Two Spirit Information Pages: Warning Acknowledgments, Authors.

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These web pages were created for all individuals interested in sexual minority issues with a particular hope that it will be of interest to those in the helping professions. An information spectrum is made available for this purpose, but "everything" is not represented herein. The extent to which information is made available in each subject varies, generally as the result of Internet information availability. A limit on one's time to do extensive searches is also a factors, thus addressing possible criticisms from individuals well versed in these subjects.

The referenced information is not a reflection of whatever the authors may believe, know, or understand about sexual minority issues, and the same applies for the University of Calgary: the host for this site. As well as possible, subject-related information searches were made, followed by a selection process if a vast amount of information was available on a subject. When information was difficult to locate and access, often due to its rarity or social sensitivity, all encountered information was placed on the page. This often applied for Internet-based information, and sometimes for published papers and dissertation abstracts. All papers and abstracts related to a particular subject are not referenced on these pages.

We hope the information made available will result in a learning enjoyment, and that you may also venture into acquiring more information on the selected subjects and on subjects only touched on within these pages. To assist in your information searches, web pages were developed and are listed in the left frame on your screen. The "meat" of this web site, however, are the "21 SUBJECTS" pages programmed to appear "full screen" (outside of frames) when requested. They are divided into three basic sections:
 


The underlying ideology for the creation of this web site is "knowledge dissemination" and the easy - and relatively free - access to subject(s) often neglected - even avoided - in academia and in other social sectors. Knowledge is needed to begin understanding important negative social realities often causally implicated in serious - sometimes worsening - social problems such as youth suicide, and the many interrelated socially induced problems commonly experienced by sexual minority individuals. Unfortunately, the understanding of "sexual orientation" and the commonly associated "gender non-conformity" issues is generally lacking, and it is therefore hoped that one visitor to this web site - probably young with high potential - or maybe two or more - will be inspired to venture into this field so that, eventually, greater understandings of these human attributes will result.

In 2001, the 12 most popular/read Social Work journals were given the equivalent of a failing grade with respect to the publication of papers related to gay and lesbian issues by Van Voorhis & Wagner (2001). Their study results were summarized in the abstract: "Two-thirds of the 121 social work journal articles published on homosexuality focus on HIV/AIDS. Gay and lesbian subject matter not related to HIV/AIDS constitutes only 1 % of this literature. Meeting the Council on Social Work Education requirement for curriculum content on sexual orientation will be difficult if educators rely only on social work journals for knowledge." Tragically, the lack of "sexual minority" knowledge has also been endemic in most fields of study. For example, related problems in psychology were summarized by Rothblum (1994) with a telling title for her paper: "I only read about myself on bathroom walls": the need for research on the mental health of lesbians and gay men." However, "gay and lesbian" issues are only one part of what may be called "sexual minority" issues.

The lack of coverage of sexual minority issues in mainstream social work journals may also reflect other more covert activities carried out by those who have positioned themselves to be authorities in social work. For example, the following excerpt reports on the common anti-gay attitudes of deans of Social Work as cited from: Miller J (1998). "A narrative interview with Ann Hartman. Part One: Becoming a social worker." Reflections: Narratives of Professional Helping, 4(3), 56-69.

"I remember one of my friends overheard several of the male deans at a social work Dean's meeting communicating with each other saying, 'The lesbians are taking over the field.' I am sure there is still plenty going on underground, as you can imagine. For instance five or six years ago there was a concerted, but rather quiet effort led by some of the deans to keep homosexuality out of the Council on Social Work Education guidelines." (p. 66)
The recent social construction of sexuality as a binary (heterosexual/homosexual: Tremblay & Ramsay, 2000) had resulted in the exclusion of bisexual realities, this often being called "biphobia." Therefore, it was not surprising that Clark & Seovich (1997: 248) reported: "Of the 13,217 articles examined in 17 [marriage & family therapy] journals, only 77 (.6%) focused on gay, lesbian, and/or bisexual issues or used sexual orientation as a variable. Findings support the contention that gay, lesbian, and bisexual issues are ignored by marriage and family therapy researchers and scholars," thus making possible the following title of a paper: "Lesbians, gay men and family therapy: a contradiction of terms?" (Malley & Tasker, 1999). Most ignored, however, were issues related to bisexuality. Clark & Seovich (1997: 248) noted that "only two studies [.02%] included bisexuals, indicating a dearth of knowledge in this area." A similar situation has existed for transgender / transsexual / transvestite issues, with aversions commonly referred to as "transphobia." Intersexuality issues have also been greatly neglected, most likely because these individuals, and bisexual people, challenge cherished dichotomies, the latter involving our binary perception of the sexes.

Sex, gender, and sexual orientation issues also intersect with issues related to people of colour as reflected in social work practice. For example, Van Voorhis & Wagner (2002) highlighted the similarity of their research results with those of McMahon & Allen-Meares (1992) who had examined the mainstream social work coverage of issues related to people of colour : "[Our] content analysis, like the study done by McMahon & Allen-Meares (1992), shows the narrow focus in the social work literature. It supports practice that intervenes with the client and virtually ignored the client's environment and the broader societal factors that constrain individual behaviors. The failure of the professional literature to address heterosexism in US society and the profession helps to maintain the status quo..." (351-2). The McMahon & Allen-Meares (1992) is titled: "Is social work racist? A content analysis of recent literature." Fortunately, these GLBTQ (Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, Questioning) Information Pages are multicultural in scope and issues related to people of colour are not restricted to the North American context.

The lack of coverage of GLBTQ issues in mainstream journals, however, has not been restricted to the above noted fields of study. Crocco (2001: 65) reports on "the missing discourse about gender and sexuality in the social studies," and D'Augelli (2003: 345) describes the the lack of coverage of GLB issues in community psychology: "...little work was done by community psychologists on LGB issues until the very late 1990s. For example, with the exception of my four pages (D’Augelli, 2000) and a five-page discussion of AIDS prevention in gay communities (Revenson & Schiaffino, 2000), almost no mention is made of LGB issues in almost 1000 pages of the Handbook of Community Psychology (Rappaport & Seidman, 2000), a comprehensive review of the field. In the Handbook’s coverage of the first 25 years of community psychology’s treatment of women’s empowerment (Swift, Bond, & Serrano-Garcia, 2000), the section on lesbians (p. 862) identified four papers on the topic (which I had written). Thus, the field’s historical indifference to LGB issues is clearly documented by their absence in the Handbook." Harper and Schneider (2003: 244-5) reported on two studies of the LGB content in major community psychology journals: no more than one percent of published articles had been related to GLB issues.

It should also be recognized that this "lack of coverage of GLBTQ issues" reflects not only a lack of will to educate fellow professionals by those in authority at the mainstream journals in the helping professions but, also suggested, is the likelihood that requests for such an education have not been made by helping professionals. In the 1990s, via work done to provide a minimum of GLBTQ education to helping professionals in Calgary, it was discovered that most of them had not received any formal education related to sexual minorities. Furthermore, the great majority had not sought to acquire such an education. As a rule, they reported either not knowing where such information could be located and/or they did not have the time to seek it out. This web site section - including the section on Bisexual / Gay Male Youth Suicidality - represents an attempt to make available as much of this information as possible so that, at least for those seeking related information, it has been made easily available at one online location.

The development of the GLBTQ Education Section was made possible with trust fund assistance from Professor Richard Ramsay, Faculty of Social Work, University of Calgary. The time needed to make this site a reality was supplied by Pierre Tremblay who initially became connected with the University of Calgary's Faculty of Social Work as an independent associate researcher with Professor Christopher Bagley. Dr. Bagley is now at the University of Southampton, England where some of this information was located and made available on the Internet from 2000 to 2003. A research association with Professor Ramsay began at about the same time and continues - with the focus being on a better understanding of suicide issues, especially related to youth and sexual orientations.

Chris Hooymans, the owner and manager of Calgary's Websight West must be thanked for having supplied, free of charge, consulting services and computer time, the latter also applying to the use of Rick Reist's and Glen Lynas' computer. Websight West, via "virtualcity.com", has also hosted, free of charge since 1998, the "Internet Link" sections of these pages as they were being developed so that the "information" was made available. These "Internet GLBTQ Info-Pages" have been a part of the "www.youth-suicide.com/gay-bisexual/" web pages (1996) developed by Pierre Tremblay in an effort to make gay and bisexual male suicide information - and related issues - more widely and readily available. 

DEDICATION

To Individuals Who Terminated Their Lives

Or Sought To Do So...

Because They Were Carefully Taught:

10 Years of Age, Of Colour, and Wanting to Die in Calgary, Alberta
(Must Scroll, 60% Down Referenced Page)

A Calgary boy in his Early Teens Attempts Suicide

A Gay(?) Suicide in Edmonton, Alberta

Dead Gay Kid's Don't Talk, But...

Better to Be Dead Than Gay

In Memory  of...

Bruce

Bibliography


Clark, WM., and Seovich, JM. (1997) Twenty years and still in the dark? Content analysis of articles pertaining to gay, lesbian, and bisexual issues in marriage and family therapy journals. Journal of Marital and Family Therapy, 23(3), 239-53. (PubMed Abstract)

Crocco, Magaret Smith (2001). The missing discourse about gender and sexuality in the social studies. Theory Into Practice, 40(1): 65-71.

D'Augelli, Anthony R (2003). Coming Out in Community Psychology: Personal Narrative and Disciplinary Change. American Journal of Community Psychology, 31(3/4): 343-54. (PubMed Abstract)

Harper GW, Schneider M (2003). Oppression and Discrimination Among Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgendered People and Communities: A Challenge for Community Psychology. American Journal of Community Psychology, 31(3/4): 243-52. (PubMed Abstract)

Malley M,  Tasker F (1999). Lesbians, gay men and family therapy: a contradiction of terms? Journal of Family Therapy, 21(1): 3-29.

McMahon, A. & Allen-Meares, P. (1992). Is social work racist? A content analysis of recent literature. Social Work, 37(6), 533-538. (Abstract)

Miller J (1998). A narrative interview with Ann Hartman. Part One: Becoming a social worker. Reflections: Narratives of Professional Helping, 4(3), 56-69.

Rothblum, ED. (1994)"I only read about myself on bathroom walls": the need for research on the mental health of lesbians and gay men. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 62(2), 213-20. (PubMed Abstract)

Van Voorhis R, Wagner M (2001). Coverage Of Gay And Lesbian Subject Matter In Social Work Journals. Journal of Social Work Education, 37(1): 147-159. (Abstract)

Van Voorhis R, Wagner M (2002). Among the Missing: Content on Lesbian and Gay People in Social Work Journals. Social Work. 47(4): 345-54. (PubMed Abstract)

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