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A Message from Dean Philip Osteen

Night photo of the illuminated block U, wrapped in a rainbow of colors

On Monday, November 21, Dean Philip Osteen shared the following message with the students, faculty, and staff of the University of Utah College of Social Work.

Dear College of Social Work community –

I know that you are all equally shocked and saddened as I am to hear of the violent attack on the LGBTQA2S+ community of Colorado Springs, CO over the weekend. Our hearts go out to the family and friends of the victims and to the broader community. Despite the hard-fought victories achieved in this country by the LGBTQA2S+ community, we continue to face the daily threat of violence and hate crimes, along with the fear that the policies that affirm our rights are in real danger of being unraveled. That this event occurred on the eve of November’s Transgender Day of Remembrance serves to further expose the disproportionate violence experienced by the transgender community, particularly indigenous and black and brown transgender women.

Our country continues to be ravaged by a culture of violence that targets the most vulnerable of us, especially, though not exclusively, in terms of race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, and gender, gender identity, and gender expression. We must reflect deeply on our commitment to social justice, not just the idea of social justice, but the WORK of social justice, and the role we play as social workers.

Resources are available to students, staff, and faculty in need of support; please do not hesitate to reach out.

Philip Osteen, PhD



LGBT Resource Center

Center for Student Wellness, Victim-Survivor Advocacy Office

University Counseling Center
For after-hours emergencies, contact the 24/7 Crisis Line: 801-587-3000.

Local, Off-Campus

Utah Pride Center

LGBTQ-Affirmative Therapist Guild of Utah


Crisis Textline
Text HOME to 741741 to connect with a crisis counselor 24/7

The Trevor Project
Call 1-866-488-7386 or text START to 678678 to connect with an LGBTQ+ friendly counselor 24/7/365

Talk with a crisis counselor by calling 1-833-372-3388, visiting the SafeUT website, or downloading the Apple or Android


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Last Updated: 12/12/23