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Welcome to the California Department of Social Services (CDSS)

Sexual Orientation, Gender Identity, and Expression (SOGIE) Information Webpage

Everyone has a sexual orientation, gender identity, and expression (SOGIE). As such, each person’s journey of self-awareness and expression is unique and individualized according to their culture, environment, and lived experiences. When referring to individuals who are transgender, they have a gender that does not align with the sex they were assigned at birth. Whereas, gender expansive individuals have a more fluid lived experience of their gender than cultural expectations based on their assigned sex.

All young people need to know that the adults who are caring for them also affirm who they are as an “individual” regardless of personal bias and beliefs. According to the experiences of nearly 40,000 lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer/questioning (LGBTQ) youth across the United States, 70% of transgender youth with family support report positive mental health.

CDSS is committed to ensure that the emotional, mental, and physical needs of our LGBTQ+ youth in foster care are addressed effectively and efficiently. As such, CDSS has dedicated to engaging the “youth voice” which helps drive legislative implementation of both state and local-level policy.

This webpage is intended to provide helpful resources and information to assist and support children, youth, and young adults in foster care with varying/diverse SOGIE. Our hope is that this webpage will be a comprehensive resource hub to assist and inform those serving and working with our vulnerable and valued children and youth regardless of their SOGIE.

Contact Us

Permanency Policy Bureau
Permanency Services & Support Unit
744 P Street, MS 8-13-556
Sacramento, CA 95814
(916) 657-1858

Crises Hotlines and Resource Links




  • Trevor Text: START to 678678
  • National Runaway TEXT 66008

Reporting Foster Youth Rights Violations
If your complaint is related to the care, placement, services, or rights of foster youth please contact:

Office of the Foster Care Ombudsperson
744 P Street, M.S. 8-13-25
Sacramento, CA 95814
1-(877) 846-1602

For more information on how the Office of the Foster Care Ombudsperson can assist you, please visit our website at https://fosteryouthhelp.ca.gov