Using what you learned from your readings, describe challenges LGBT individuals may encounter in a career setting and discuss possible strategies counselors can use to work with and advocate for these clients. What are some of the continued issues that this population faces in society? In your post, include strategies for counselors to take if biases and assumptions exist that could negatively impact the counseling process. There needs to be headings in the post.
Respond to two peers regarding their understanding of this population and their proposed strategies for addressing bias and assumptions. I need a response to each of my peer’s posting. The response needs to include at least one reference. For this question there has been only one peer that has post, so I will provide you with the second peer response later this evening.
First Peer Posting
Bias and Stereotyping Against Transgender Individuals
Mizock & Mueser (2014) state that transgender individuals tend to face a lot of backlash in their everyday lives because of their gender identities. The authors indicate that many of these individuals suffer with poor mental health, have diagnosed psychological disorders, and may even be suicidal in many cases. As far as gainful employment, the author states that poor mental health makes it difficult to obtain and maintain a good job. Between being socially ostracized and also really sick, this population can’t seem to catch a break. With employment, these individuals seem to be already set up for failure. The authors explain that there is a lot of stereotyping and bias against transgender people in the workforce. Transgender individuals feel targeted and scorned. They report feeling conflicted because they want to be themselves, but they want to be understood and appreciated as well.
Zunker (2016) states that there are strategies to work with and to advocate for LGBT individuals. One of the main things a counselor can do to advocate for these individuals is to educate the public. Having a workshop or job fair with local companies and their hiring teams and educating them about the bias and stereotyping that transgender people feel would be a step in the right direction. The author mentions having a support group for straight and gay people is a good idea. The author emphasizes the importance of educating young LGBT individuals about sexually transmitted diseases. This would go a long way in advocating for these individuals. The counselor is not there to judge, but to extend a warm and welcome hand.
When it comes to strategies to ensure the best care for LGBT individuals, counselors must be culturally competent. For an LGBT individual, culture goes far beyond race and ethnicity. The cultures of LGBT individuals may be very complex because they have to find a way to mix their culture of origin with their transgender lifestyle. Zunker (2016) states that there are many myths regarding homosexual and transgender people that counselors must make themselves aware of before working with this population. The author goes on to say that the counselor must know the laws in his or her state regarding same-sex marriage. This is important because it affects insurance and health care. Furthermore, the author mentions that the career counselor must be cognizant of the fact that an individual may need some personal counseling if he or she is feeling conflicted about gender identity. This individual may not yet be ready for career counseling. However, the career counselor can make a proper referral, and then see the client back when he or she is ready to tackle employment and career issues.
Mizock, L., & Mueser, K. T. (2014). Employment, mental health, internalized stigma, and coping with transphobia among transgender individuals. Psychology of sexual orientation and gender diversity, 1(2), 146-158. doi:10.1037/sgd0000029
Zunker, V. G. (2016). Career Counseling: A holistic approach, 9th Edition. [VitalSource Bookshelf Online]. Retrieved from https://bookshelf.vitalsource.com/#/books/9781305729759/