Physical, psychological, and social vulnerabilities of sexual minority youth are well documented. Yet factors that protect this population from these risks remain relatively unknown. Previous researchers suggest that (1) a sense of safety, meaningful relationships with others, and positive identity development are protective and (2) social support programs focusing on sexual minority youth (Queer Youth Space) have a positive impact. In this article, Queer Youth Space is explored as a program that may promote protective factors and mediate risks. Theories of attachment, self psychology, and social identity are applied to conceptualize Queer Youth Space and its protective roles. Implications for social work practice and research are discussed.

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Keywords Attachment theory, Protective factors, Risk factors, Self psychology, Sexual minority youth, Social identity, Social support program, Social work practice
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Journal Smith College Studies in Social Work
Asakura, K. (2010). Queer youth space: A protective factor for sexual minority youth. Smith College Studies in Social Work, 80(4), 361–376. doi:10.1080/00377317.2010.516716