Courage and Compassion
A few hours later, a newsletter titled “Addressing the Needs of LGBTQ Youth Experiencing Homelessness” from the U.S. Interagency Council on Homeless arrived in the inbox. Though the statistics from the reports in the newsletter were not surprising, they were still shocking. While only 5% of the youth population is identified as LGBTQ, 40% of the homeless youth population is LGBTQ. Fifty-eight percent of these youth have been sexually assaulted in comparison to 33% of heterosexual homeless youth. And sadder still: 62% of homeless LGBT youth attempt suicide. LGBT youth who are rejected by their families in adolescence are 8.4 times more likely to attempt suicide, than heterosexual youth. And the offerings of help for these LGBTQ kids are almost non-existant as the report notes that”currently no federal programs specifically designed to meet the needs of gay and transgender homeless youth, and there are no federal protections, and few state laws, in place to keep these youth from being discriminated against while accessing federally funded homeless services.
“You know what? You are imperfect, and you wired for struggle but you are worthy of love and belonging.”