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YOUTH STUDY REVEALS WIDESPREAD ANTI-LGBTI DISCRIMINATION

in AUSTRALIA, 08/02/2014

A new in-depth study of LGBTI and queer youth has revealed insights into the experiences of these young people, including statistics around poor mental health, self-harm and attempted suicide linked to homophobia and transphobia.

Called Growing Up Queer, the study by the Young and Well Cooperative Research Centre with the University of Western Sydney and gender and sexual diversity youth organisation Twenty10 involved over 1000 young people aged 16–27 responding to a national online survey and participating in focus groups.

Growing Up Queer contributes to a growing body of evidence linking homophobic and transphobic harassment to poor mental health outcomes. In particular, the study revealed that 41 per cent of participants had thought about self-harm and/or suicide, 33 per cent had harmed themselves and 16 per cent had attempted suicide.

Many young people also experienced frequent and ongoing harassment, violence, marginalisation, ostracism from peers and rejection from families. These experiences led to feelings of despair, isolation and internalised homophobia or transphobia.

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