This isn’t exclusively a trans* issue (although it certainly impacts the trans* community), but it’s something that is near and dear to my heart, so I’m going to talk about it anyway.
Have you seen the statistics for LGBT youth homelessness? They’re heartbreaking. Monstrous. Criminal. This 2009 fact sheet from the National Coalition for the Homeless puts LGBT teens at 20% of the overall homeless youth population. A more recent study by the Williams Institute puts the number at more like 40%. Think about that for a minute. As much as 40% of the homeless teen population is LGBT, but according to this recent Gallup poll, only 3.5% of US adults identify as LGBT. Assuming those numbers hold true for teens and young adults, that 40% of the homeless youth population comes from only 3.5% of the total youth population. That’s a boatload of the LGBT community dealing with homelessness. According to this 2010 article, the average age that a gay or lesbian teen in New York becomes homeless is 14.4. For a trans* teen it’s 13.5. And the top two reasons for all this homelessness? Runaway due to family rejection and forced out due to family rejection.
It makes me want to vomit.
But I didn’t write this to make you all want to vomit on sunny Sunday, too. I heard about something that I wanted to pass on. Lost & Found is an anthology from Featherweight Press with royalties going to Lost-n-Found Youth, Inc., an organization that works with homeless LGBT youth.
I know we’re all readers here, so grab a copy of the anthology. And consider making a donation to Lost-n-Found or another organization in your area that works with this population. Money, time, material goods, a signal boost. These kids need help. Let’s do what we can to provide it.
ETA: For those who prefer to order from third party sites, Lost & Found is now available on Amazon. I’ll update with links as it becomes available from other retailers.