LGBTQ+ youth face unique challenges, including difficulty accessing affirming medical care, discrimination at school and work, and increased rates of homelessness. 

CCA’s LGBTQ+ Youth Advocacy Project brings legal resources directly to LGBTQ+ youth. A CCA attorney is embedded in the Yale Pediatric Gender Program as part of the Medical-Legal Partnership with Yale New Haven Hospital. CCA also partners with community organizations like the New Haven Pride Center to provide legal advice and education to youth in a low-barrier setting. 

Visit the LGBTQ page for more resources.


Systemic Advocacy

In addition to individual representation, the LGBTQ+ Youth Advocacy Project works to change policy and practices at a local and state level. Legislative and policy advocacy priorities include improving school climate and addressing the needs of LGBTQ+ youth experiencing homelessness. 

In the 2024 legislative session, we successfully promoted updates to CT’s safe school climate statute that will help collect more accurate data on the experiences of LGBTQ+ youth in school and establish a new position of Director of School Climate Improvement at the State Department of Education.


The LGBTQ+ Youth Advocacy Project provides training and education directly to youth in addition to parents, caregivers, educators, advocates, and medical providers. Training topics include bullying, harassment, and discrimination; state and federal civil rights laws; education rights of LGBTQ+ youth; the legal landscape of gender-affirming care; and name and gender marker changes. 

CCA has presented at numerous conferences, including the American Psychological Association (APA) Convention. In recent years, CCA has traveled to APA with the Yale Gender Program to educate mental health providers from across the country on interdisciplinary healthcare for transgender and gender-nonconforming youth and the legal status of gender-affirming care.

Individual Representation

“Sam” was referred to CCA by a caseworker. “Sam” was a transgender middle school student and had been experiencing bullying and discrimination at school. The bullying was starting to impact his mental health and attendance. Sam also has a learning disability and receives special education services. 

CCA helped “Sam” and his mother understand the bullying complaint process and develop a safety plan with the school, in addition to revising his IEP. Unfortunately, “Sam’s” mental health continued to decline and he was unable to attend school consistently for several months. CCA helped the family access gender-affirming mental health care and coordinated with “Sam’s” school throughout the process. When “Sam” was still unable to return to school, CCA helped him access educational instruction at home and worked with the school district to find a more supportive learning environment for him. “Sam” was accepted into a therapeutic day school and for the first time in a long time, “Sam” is excited to go to school. 

Mallory James Sanchez
Staff Attorney and Singer Fellow
LGBTQ Youth Advocacy Project