“Safe Spaces,” by Annemarie Vaccaro M’96, Offers Resources for LGBT Youth

Safe Spaces book cover

Annemarie Vaccaro M’96 has just published Safe Spaces: Making Schools and Communities Welcoming to LGBT Youth. This timely book chronicles the struggles of LGBT youth and offers strategies for support.

Recent studies find that LGBT youth face bullying at a much higher rate than their straight peers and gender conforming peers and are at increased risk for suicide. Without support, LGBT youth struggle interpersonally and academically. The authors illuminate these challenges as well as the triumphs of LGBT youth through compelling personal narratives from more than 100 LGBT individuals and allies. Safe Spaces chronicles the lives of LGBT youth of all ages, weaving together recent news stories, research studies, and public policy trends. Action Steps and Reflection Points are embedded throughout, offering readers positive and tangible ways to make their own homes, schools, and communities more inclusive and welcoming of LGBT people.

“Campus Pride commends the authors of this timely and thoughtful book. This is a ‘must read’ for anyone wanting to help make safer, more welcoming places for LGBT youth.”
—Shane Windmeyer, founder/executive director, Campus Pride

Safe Spaces points readers to a host of community and national LGBT resources and includes a bibliography of academic, policy, and news material related to LGBT issues. Readers will learn creative ways to support LGBT-friendly teachers, coaches, community leaders, and family members and to challenge those that are not.

Safe Spaces: Making Schools and Communities Welcoming to LGBT Youth is available for sale online and Amazon.com.

About the Authors

Annemarie Vaccaro, Ph.D., is a faculty member in the Department of Human Development and Family Studies at the University of Rhode Island. She has served as a facilitator for the national Campus Pride professional development series for LGBT student advisors and is cocreator of a faculty fellows program designed to assist college faculty in making their curriculum LGBT inclusive. Her research on diversity has been published in various journals, including Journal of LGBT Youth, Journal of GLBT Family Studies, and Journal of Gay and Lesbian Mental Health.

Gerri August, Ph.D., is an assistant professor of Educational Studies at Rhode Island College. She serves on the board of Infinity Volunteers and has cofacilitated a workshop series aimed at training teachers on diversity. She was recently honored as an Education Alliance Fellow at Brown University and is a faculty advisor for the LGBT student organization at Rhode Island College.

Megan Kennedy, Ph.D., is a faculty member in the Education Department at Westfield State University. She has copresented at regional and national conferences on the topic of LGBT literature in the classroom and is a faculty advisor for Westfield State University’s LGBT student organization.