Discrimination Continues for LGBTQ Youth

The U.S. and the world have come a long way since the birth of the modern LGBTQ movement, which many experts agree started with the Stonewall Rebellion in New York City in June of 1969. However, while huge strides have been made in social and legal acceptance, discrimination continues – especially among LGBTQ youth.

According to a 2019 national survey on LGBTQ mental health from nonprofit organization The Trevor Project, 71 percent of LGBTQ youth say they continue to experience discrimination based on their sexual orientation or gender identity. Another two-thirds of LGBTQ youth respondents reported that someone had attempted to convince them to change their sexual orientation or gender identity.

Other data from the survey show increased mental health challenges for LGBTQ people due to their sexual orientation or gender identity. Overall, 39 percent of LGBTQ respondents said they seriously considered attempting suicide over the past year, with a majority of those between the ages of 13 and 17. An overwhelming 71 percent of LGBTQ youth also reported feeling hopeless or sad for at least two weeks in the past year.

While large gains in LGBTQ support and acceptance have been made over the last decade, data in this survey shows how the LGBTQ community – particularly those between the ages of 13 and 17 – still struggle against pressures aimed against their identity.