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LGBTQ Youth Focus of Upcoming Data Briefing on Feb 27

Despite tremendous strides toward equality and inclusion made in recent years in our country, many cards remain stacked against LGBTQ (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Questioning)-identified youth. LGBTQ youth experience much higher rates of depression, anxiety, alcohol & drug use, as well as lower self-esteem. Rates of suicide are 2 to 7 times higher among sexual minority youth than their heterogeneous peers. Recent surveys of LGBTQ youth reveal:

  • 95% have trouble getting to sleep at night
  • 70% have been bullied at school because of their sexual orientation
  • 48% of youth out to their parents say that their families make them feel bad for being LGBTQ
  • Only 24% said they can “definitely be themselves as an LGBTQ person at home”
  • Only 26% said they feel safe in the classroom

Harassment, family and peer rejection, bullying, isolation, and a lack of a sense of belonging are some of the major stressors faced by LGBTQ youth today. As parents, youth-serving professionals, educators, and community members, we can create safe and affirming spaces so every LGBTQ youth can be out, proud and able to thrive.
The data briefing will take place on Wednesday, February 27 from 8:30 to 10:00 am at the Thundermist Health Center, 1 River Street, in Wakefield.  Download flyer here.

Elana Rosenberg, Executive Director of Youth Pride, Inc., will present latest statistics
Elana Rosenberg, Exec. Director of Youth Pride, Inc. (YPI), will share relevant local and national data reflected in the stories and experiences of RI Youth. Elana began working at YPI as the GSA (Gay Straight Alliance) Network & Programming Coordinator in 2007. In that role, she organized center programming, provided professional development to RI school educators and administrators, and managed the statewide GSA Network for 5 years. After serving as a member of the Community Investment team at United Way of RI, Elana returned to YPI in November 2017, as the organization’s Executive Director. She holds a BA in sociology from Smith College and a MS in College Student Personnel from Miami of Ohio University.

Followed by expert panel and audience discussion
Rosenberg’s data will be followed by a panel discussion and audience discussion to be facilitated by
Scott Mueller, Asst. Professor of Social Work at Rhode Island College. Panel members will include
professionals supporting LGBTQ youth/young adults throughout Rhode Island. Attendees will leave with a better understanding of the issues facing LGBTQ youth, as well as available resources and next steps.

RSVP to the Coalition; observe parking restrictions

The event is free, but attendees are asked to RSVP to Donna Greene at (401) 788-2371 or dgreene@southcountyhealth.org by Monday, February 25.
Thundermist also asks that attendees NOT park in the health center’s patient or staff lots. Parking is available on the street, at the Wakefield Baptist Church, and the two municipal parking lots on Main Street.