Zero Abuse Project Serving LGBTQIA+ Children and Families in the Child Abuse MDT Process

Training Overview

This course will provide an overview of affirmative practices for all multidisciplinary team (MDT) professionals supporting and serving LGBTQIA+ children, youth and families when responding to child abuse and maltreatment. In addition to providing an overview of gender and sexuality terminology, some of the topics covered will include cultural considerations when working with LGBQTIA+ children, youth and families, working with caregivers that are not supportive of LGBTQIA+ youth, preparing the team, family and child for the process, allyship, pronouns, engaging community partners, vetting resources for LGBQTIA+ families, considerations for the forensic protocol and the use of interview aids. While considerations for the forensic interview will be discussed in this course, the primary focus of this training is on the MDT, as a whole.

This training is appropriate for law enforcement, prosecuting attorneys, child protection workers, forensic interviewers, mental health professionals, medical providers, advocates, community liaisons, and youth serving professionals that may interact with LGBTQIA+ children and youth.

This event will be held virtually via Zoom. A Zoom link will be sent out to registrants prior to the training.

Learning Objectives

  • Discuss considerations for engaging meaningfully with LGBQTIA+ victim/survivors and their families in the MDT process, including work with non-supportive parents and caregivers.
  • Increase understanding of LGBTQIA+ culture, including the issues that affect the LGBTQIA+ community.
  • Recognize how LGBTQIA+ victim/survivor’s experiences with systems providers and polyvictimzations can affect interactions child abuse professionals may have with LGBTQIA+ victims and their families.
    Offer tools for professionals to examine current practices and suggestions for practice to create more affirmative interactions and environments for LGBTQIA+ children and families.


Rachel Johnson is the Lead Forensic Interview Specialist with Zero Abuse Project. Rachel most recently served as the Program Director for the Minnesota Children’s Alliance and has fourteen years of experience in work related to forensic interviewing, multidisciplinary teams, advocacy, child abuse, prevention education, sexual assault and family violence, both domestically and abroad. Bettering the systemic response to LGBTQIA+ victim/survivors of sexual abuse and abuse has been an on-going focus of their academic, professional, and community-based work.

Caitie Dahl is a Forensic Interview Specialist and Trainer with Zero Abuse Project. Prior to joining Zero Abuse, Caitie served as a Forensic Interviewer, Forensic Program Coordinator, Trainer, and Multidisciplinary Team Facilitator with First Witness Child Advocacy Center in Duluth, Minnesota. Caitie also served as the Program Manager at the campus Gender Equity Resource Center, and is passionate about recognizing and addressing the unique needs of LGBTQIA+ youth who have experienced maltreatment.

Register via Zero Abuse Project

This training is being offered to professionals in and residents of Minnesota free of charge under a grant funded by MN OJP.