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Innovative approaches address aging and mental health needs in LGBTQ communities

LGBTQ older adults have higher levels of psychological distress as compared to older adults in general. They also experience multiple barriers to accessing equitable, culturally competent mental health and aging services because of their distinct histories and particular social contexts. This article discusses this lack of access to services, and highlights an innovative way mental health services are being delivered in LGBTQ communities.

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Cultural competence and social work education: Moving toward assessment of practice behaviors

Social work educators are responsible for ensuring that future practitioners are culturally competent and have the ability to work effectively with people from different backgrounds. The purpose of this article is to address the current limitations in measuring cultural competence and to report the results of a qualitative study examining stakeholders’ conceptualizations of the definition, educational process, and evaluation of cultural competence in social work education. Findings support long-standing assumptions in the literature regarding the need for social workers to develop certain knowledge and attitudes as prerequisites of becoming culturally competent, and emphasize the need for further exploration of the way social workers define cultural competence, translate it into discrete practice behaviors, and assess how students demonstrate these behaviors.

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Concealing concealment: The mediating role of internalized heterosexism in psychological distress among lesbian, gay, and bisexual older adults

Recent population-based studies indicate that sexual minorities aged 50 and older experience significantly higher rates of psychological distress than their heterosexual age-peers. The minority stress model has been useful in explaining disparately high rates of psychological distress among younger sexual minorities. The purpose of this study is to test a hypothesized structural relationship between two minority stressors—internalized heterosexism and concealment of sexual orientation—and consequent psychological distress among a sample of 2,349 lesbian, gay, and bisexual adults aged 50 to 95 years old.

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Last Updated: 9/9/19