Gender dysphoria is best understood as the ongoing distress about the incongruence between ones assigned sex and ones internal gender identity. This ongoing distress frequently results in impairment of function. In order to help alleviate this distress, many transgender youth require physical changes to their bodies in order to bring them into closer alignment with their internal gender identity. Unfortunately, access to competent mental health and medical care for those youth desiring gender transition is still extremely rare, and often inadequate in most places around the United States. This program is a comprehensive, two day symposium designed for professionals interested in providing sensitive and competent mental health and medical care for gender non-conforming children, transgender youth and young adults. While primarily didactic in presentation, this symposium also includes case studies, and audience activities designed to highlight the challenges of caring for this population, and improve understanding of their needs.
Aydin Olson-Kennedy, MSW, LCSW is the Executive Director of the Los Angeles Gender Center where he provides psychotherapy for gender non-conforming and transgender youth, adults and their families. As a transgender man and mental health provider, Aydin brings a dual perspective into his work. He has spoken around the country for the past two decades about the importance of rights for gender non-conforming and transgender and individuals, with emphasis on identifying and acknowledging domains of privilege.
Susan Landon, MA, LMFT, is the Director of the Child, Adolescent, and Family Services Program at the Los Angeles Gender Center. Ms. Landon has been providing mental health services for children, adolescents and their families for 25 yrs, and for transgender individuals for the past 10 years. She has also spoken around the country about the importance of competent mental health providers in this field. She is an expert in child development, with extensive experience assisting youth and young adults through gender transition.
With Special Guest Speaker: Dr. Johanna Olson-Kennedy
Dr. Johanna Olson-Kennedy, has been providing medical intervention for gender non-conforming and transgender youth and young adults including puberty suppression and cross sex hormones for the past nine years, and is considered a national expert in this area. Double Board certified in Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine, as well as spearheading a robust research program with transgender youth, she brings cutting edge knowledge to the field. Dr. Olson-Kennedy is the Medical Director of The Center for Transyouth Health and Development at Children's Hospital in Los Angeles, the largest transgender youth clinic in the United States. Dr. Olson-Kennedy has appeared frequently on national television, and spoken all over the country to educate the public about the needs of transgender youth.
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