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Homeless Youth and LGBTQ. Desperate situations. PFLAG Gainesville . Began in January 2012 Support, Advocacy, and Education Monthly meetings – third Tuesday of each month at 7:00 p.m. Next meeting is August 20, 2013, at 7:00 p.m.

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homeless youth and lgbtq

Homeless Youth and LGBTQ

Desperate situations

pflag gainesville
PFLAG Gainesville

Began in January 2012

Support, Advocacy, and Education

Monthly meetings – third Tuesday of each month at 7:00 p.m.

Next meeting is August 20, 2013, at 7:00 p.m.


LGBTQ people are disproportionately represented in the homeless population because of the frequent discrimination they face at home, in school, and on the job.

some statistics
Some Statistics

3 to 5 percent of the youth population in the United States identify as LGBTQ

According to 2012 reports, as much as 40 percent of the homeless youth in the United States are LGBTQ.

Disproportionate Numbers

some more statistics
Some More Statistics

Given that youth may not be willing to self-identify as being LGBT when initially presenting for services, the data in this 2012 report may underestimate the proportion of LGBT youth served by homeless youth providers.

The agencies considered the physical and mental health of the transgender clients to be worse or much worse than the other clients and that the overall health of the LGB homeless youth clients was worse than other homeless youth.

a little more statistics
A Little More Statistics

Nearly two-thirds (65%) of the LGBT homeless youth have mental health issues and more than half (53%) have histories of alcohol and substance abuse.

Four in ten LGBT homeless youth clients have been subject to sexual exploitation and sexual assault. About a third have been in foster care, have experienced domestic partner abuse, and have had contact with the juvenile justice system.

almost finished with statistics
Almost Finished With Statistics

“Survival Sex” – “exchanging sex for anything needed, including money, food, clothes, a place to stay or drugs.”

LGBT youth are three times more likely to participate in survival sex than their heterosexual peers.

LGBT youth in juvenile justice system are disproportionately the victims of harassment and violence, including rape.

why are they homeless
Why Are They Homeless?

Family rejection on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity was the most frequently cited factor contributing to LGBT homelessness.

The next most frequently cited reason for LGBT youth homelessness was youth being forced out of their family homes as a result of coming out as lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender.

issues in lgbtq homeless community
Issues in LGBTQ Homeless Community

Keep secret

There is already a trust issue

LGBTQ youth more likely to be sexually/physically abused

Foster Care many times continues abuse


Faith-based organizations scare LGBTQ youth. If an organization’s core belief is that homosexuality is wrong, that organization may not respect clients’ sexual orientation or gender identity. This may lead to discrimination and harassment.

They face rejection, humiliation, and abuse in the home and school. Home and school are two central support networks in a young person’s life.

Most shelters are segregated by birth sex, regardless of the individual’s gender identity and homeless transgender youth are even ostracized by some agencies that serve their LGB peers.


Housing LGBTQ youth together offers an element of support that they so desperately need and often don’t find.

Many of these youth need validation. Housing them together with other LGBTQ offers this validation, and can offer them an opportunity to better understand themselves and how they fit into the community.

ways to welcome all
Ways to Welcome All

Put up signs in the lobby, intake areas, or other communal areas that indicate that the facility welcomes LGBTQ individuals.

Post a general nondiscrimination policy that says that all people – regardless of race, religion, color, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, age, disability, HIV status, gender identity, or gender expression – will be respected.

welcome all
Welcome All

People should be treated according to their self-indentified gender.

The National Coalition for the Homeless added language to its nondiscrimination resolution: “Abiding by this non-discrimination resolution means that housing, shelter and services are to be made available to individuals according to the gender that the person self-identifies as”

welcome all1
Welcome All

Try to have at least one single-stall restroom. Mark as “family restroom” or just “restroom”