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Gay homelessness an “epidemic”

GalPal is a social worker.  I respect her a lot for what she does for a living.  I’d tell you it takes a lot of “compassion” but that’s a bunch of bullshit.  It’s not compassion.  Compassion is something you talk about when somebody slams on the brakes for a cat that’s crossing the street.  What she does is show mercy. 

Anyway, I’ve taken up an interest in the issue of homelessness.  I’ve been doing a lot of reading about it.  I came across this: 

“An Epidemic of Homelessness (PDF, 1.5meg)

It’s a product of the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force.  It’s 196 pages long.  It is the saddest thing you’ve read all month. 

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services estimates that the number of homeless
and runaway youth ranges from 575,000 to 1.6 million per year.1 Our analysis of the
available research suggests that between 20 percent and 40 percent of all homeless youth
identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender (LGBT)

The combination of stressors inherent to the daily life of homeless youth leads them to
abuse drugs and alcohol. For example, in Minnesota, five separate statewide studies found
that between 10 and 20 percent of homeless youth self-identify as chemically dependent.9
These risks are exacerbated for homeless youth identifying as lesbian, gay or bisexual
(LGB).

Transgender youth are disproportionately represented in the homeless population. More
generally, some reports indicate that one in five transgender individuals need or are at risk
of needing homeless shelter assistance.21 However, most shelters are segregated by birth
sex, regardless of the individual’s gender identity,22 and homeless transgender youth are
even ostracized by some agencies that serve their LGB peers.23

I’ll let you read the rest.

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