Disproportionate Numbers of LGBTQ Youth Report Living in Foster Care and Unstable Housing

A higher proportion of California youth living in foster care and unstable housing identified themselves as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender or questioning (LGBTQ) than the general population of youth, according to a new study published in the March 2019 issue of Pediatrics.

The study, “LGBTQ Youth in Unstable Housing and Foster Care,” analyzed results from the 2013-2015 California Healthy Kids Survey provided by 593,241 students enrolled in grades 6 through 12.  Fewer than 1 percent of the sample were in foster care, but of those youth, 30.4 percent identified as LGBTQ. About 3.5 percent of the students surveyed reported living in unstable housing, and of those youth, 25.3 percent identified as LGBTQ. In comparison, data from a 2015 national sample of youth found 11.2 percent identified as LGBTQ.

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