Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion for Providers

Washington County Licensing expects providers to create a welcoming and inclusive environment for all children and families in the community. It is the expectation and dedication of the Washington County Child Care Program to continually work toward increasing our cultural competence. All licensed child care providers are encouraged to take training that will increase their cultural competence as it relates to the children cared for. This training will be counted towards the 16 hours of in-service training required by the state of Minnesota.

Child Care Licensing homepage


Every child, youth, and adult is entitled to a safe, loving, and affirming foster care home, irrespective of the young person's sexual orientation, gender identity, or gender expression. Evidence shows that LGBTQ+ youth are overrepresented in the foster care system. These youth face serious risks and challenges beyond those experienced by other youth. Rejection by their families and other caregivers adds to these risks. With some additional education and training, your family can successfully provide a welcoming home to a LGBTQ+ person in need. 

  • Let the person in your care know you are willing to listen and talk about anything.
  • Make it clear that slurs or jokes based on gender, gender identity, or sexual orientation are not tolerated in your house. Express your disapproval of these types of slurs or jokes when you encounter them in the community or media.
  • Use gender-neutral language when asking about relationships. For example, instead of, "Do you have a girlfriend?" ask, "Is there anyone special in your life?"
  • Provide access to a variety of books, movies, and materials - including those that positively represent same-sex relationships. Point out LGBTQ celebrities, role models who stand up for the LGBTQ community, and people who demonstrate bravery in the face of social stigma.
  • Support their self-expression through choices of clothing, jewelry, hairstyle, friends, and room decoration.
  • Insist that other family members include and respect all people in your home.
  • Allow them to participate in activities that interest them, regardless of whether these activities are stereotypically male or female.
  • Educate yourself about LGBTQ history, issues, and resources.


  • All Are Welcome by Alexandra Penfold and Suzanne Kaufman
  • All Because You Matter by Tami Charles and Bryan Collier
  • All Kinds of Children by Norma Simon
  • All the Colors of the Earth by Sheila Hamanaka
  • Books with Characters of Color: 0-18 years old
  • Hair Like Mine by Latashia M. Perry
  • I Am Enough by Grace Byers
  • I Am Every Good Thing by Derrick Barnes and Gordon C. James
  • I Like Myself by Karen Beaumont
  • Skin Like Mine by Latashia M. Perry
  • The Colors of Us by Karen Katz
  • The Skin You Live In by Michael Tyler
  • We're Different, We're the Same (Sesame Street) by Bobbi Kates
  • Whoever You Are by Mem Fox