Youth

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Youth

Why It Matters:

Youth are coming out as lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) at younger ages than ever before. Meanwhile:

  • Ex-gay ministries have decisively shifted their focus to young people.
  • There's an epidemic of homelessness among LGBT youth. (See details below.)
  • Children of LGBT parents are harmed by restrictions on parenting, foster parenting and adoption.
  • LGBT students encounter widespread harassment and alienation on campus.

What We’re Doing:

  • In May 2009, U.S. Rep. Linda Sanchez (D-Calif.) introduced the Safe Schools Improvement Act. This legislation would amend the Safe and Drug-Free Schools and Communities Act to require schools and districts receiving federal funds to adopt codes of conduct that prohibit bullying and harassment, including on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity. It would also require that states report data on bullying and harassment to the Department of Education. We thank the congresswoman for her leadership on this important issue and the Task Force Action Fund looks forward to working with her and other allies in Congress toward passage of this legislation.
  • Through its groundbreaking research, our Policy Institute has exposed how extremists target young people through their so-called ex-gay ministries, Halloween "Hell Houses" and other tactics. Another Poilcy Institute report reveals an epidemic of homelessness among LGBT youth and offers recommendations to combat the problem.
  • We feature youth-oriented programming, community-building and networking opportunities for queer youth at our annual Creating Change Conference.

What You Can Do:

  • Are you a young person looking to get involved? Check out GLSEN for further resources.
  • If you're a young person in crisis and need someone to talk to, call The Trevor Project at (866)-4-U-TREVOR.