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Timely book chronicles the struggles of LGBT youth and offers strategies for support   


Gerri August
Gerri August, assistant professor of Educational Studies at RIC, has coauthored “SAFE SPACES: Making Schools and Communities Welcoming to LGBT Youth,” a book that chronicles the lives of LGBT youth of all ages, weaving together recent news stories, research studies and public policy trends.

August's co-authors are Annemarie Vaccaro, a faculty member in the Department of Human Development and Family Studies at the University of Rhode Island, and Megan S. Kennedy, a faculty member in the Education Department at Westfield State University.

August serves on the board of Infinity Volunteers, and has co-facilitated a workshop series aimed at training teachers on diversity. She is an Education Alliance Fellow at Brown University and the advisor of the LGBT organization at Rhode Island College.

Recent studies find that LGBT youth face bullying at a much higher rate than their straight peers and gender conforming peers, and are at increased risk for suicide. Without support, LGBT youth struggle interpersonally and academically.

The authors illuminate these challenges as well as the triumphs of LGBT youth through personal narratives from more than 100 LGBT individuals and allies.


“Action Steps” and “Reflection Points” are embedded throughout, offering readers positive and tangible ways to make their own homes, schools and communities more inclusive and welcoming of LGBT people.

Shane Windmeyer, founder/executive director of Campus Pride, described the book as a “must read for anyone wanting to help make safer, more welcoming places for LGBT youth.”

“SAFE SPACES: Making Schools and Communities Welcoming to LGBT Youth” is available for sale online at www.safespacesbook.com, sales@abc-clio.com and amazon.com.

The authors will be appearing at a University of Connecticut conference, “True Colors,” held March 16 and 17 (www.ourtruecolors.org/Programs/Conference). Also, they will be part of the URI Book Talk and Book Signing Event in conjunction with the university’s LGBTIQQ Symposium in April (www.uri.edu/glbt/symposium/symphome.htm).

For further information, contact Annemarie Vaccaro at avaccaro@uri.edu or (401) 874-2270.