Young LGBTQ+ people are at risk every day, be it with problems regarding:
- domestic violence
- physical/emotional/sexual abuse
- mental health
- rejection by family/friends
- drug/alcohol abuse
and so much more. As we continue the fight for equality and try to make our communities more safe and inclusive for everyone, pledge today to support young LGBTQ+ people in your community. You could:
- become a mentor with your local LGBTQ+ charity.
- start a support group for young LGBTQ+ people and their families.
- sign/create petitions to push your local council to provide better funding for the support of people at risk.
- if you work in a school, include LGBTQ+ people in your lessons, particularly in sex education lessons, to ensure our young people are fully informed and protected from STIs and other sexual health issues.
- keep an eye out for signs of self-harm or suicical thoughts in LGBTQ+ people in your community - look out for those wearing long sleeves during hot weather, or if they start talking about how life would be easier for others if they weren't around. Offer support, and direct them to their GP or a counselor.
- educate your own children about LGBTQ+ people and issues - let them know they live in a safe and secure home where it's okay to be exactly who they are.
- just be there. Make yourself known as an LGBTQ+ ally and show young people that you are there, you're open-minded, and you can offer support if needed.
With a huge number of homeless LGBTQ+ youths, and mental health issues on the rise, it's vital that we create a kind, caring environment, and show that although the world can sometimes be a tough place to be, there are safe havens, and people really do care.