Behavioral Health

The surveyed nearly 35,000 LGBTQ youth ages 13-24 and found several revealing insights on the state of LGBTQ+ youth mental health in the U.S.:

There were also findings that support the importance of welcoming and safe environments, resources, and services for LGBTQ+ youth and their mental health:

Strategies to improve mental health and prevent self-harming behavior and suicide include:

This guide provides information for service providers, educators, allies, and community members who seek to support the health and well-being of children and youth who are lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, questioning, intersex, or two-spirit (LGBTQI2-S) and their families. This guide can support efforts to promote full and affirming inclusion of LGBTQI2-S youth and families in communities and provider settings (e.g., child welfare, juvenile justice, mental health, schools). The guide includes a section for organizations to add their endorsement electronically. Both the National Association of School Psychologists (NASP) and the National Association of Social Workers (NASW) have endorsed the guide.


This report concludes that future research and data collection must address LGBT individuals because current lack of research yields an incomplete picture of the health status and needs of LGBT people.


This goal focuses on collecting data on LGBT health issues and improving the health of LGBT adolescents in particular.

This webpage contains specific health topics for the LGBT community, with specific resources for gay and bisexual men, youth, lesbian and bisexual women, transgender persons, and health services.This webpage focuses on information for LGBT youth, highlighting the experiences that LGBT youth face and providing information for schools and parents related to responding to violence against LGBT students.This website provides resources and information for the specific health issues related to gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender individuals.The National Workgroup to Address the Needs of Children and Youth Who Are LGBTQI2-S and Their FamiliesThis practice brief outlines key information for working with, and providing culturally and linguistically competent services to LGBTQI2-S youth.This resource offers information and resources to help practitioners throughout health and social service systems implement best practices in engaging and helping families and caregivers to support their LGBT children.This manual seeks to inform administrators and clinicians about appropriate diagnosis and treatment approaches that will help the development or enhancement of effective LGBT-sensitive programs. A 22-module training curriculum accompanies this publication.This statement addresses recommended actions to address and improve the health and well-being of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender communities.This website provides a variety of LGBT-focused data and resources on substance abuse and mental health.This report highlights the higher risk of suicidal behavior among LGBT youth and provides recommendations for youth services (e.g., schools, health practices, suicide prevention programs) and funders to promote the health, safety, and inclusion of LGBT youth.This guide provides key recommendations for talking about suicide in safe and accurate ways with LGBT youth. Learn more about how the mental health system can support LGBT youth by reading This toolkit presents an overview of current health issues among LGBT populations. Although many challenges exist regarding the availability of data, this toolkit aims to create awareness among prevention specialists and healthcare providers of the needs, experiences, and health status of LGBT Americans., an online messaging service that allows youth in crisis to live chat with volunteers who can provide support; and , an online forum through which youth can anonymously ask experts questions about sexuality and gender issues; the , which educates participants through a structured curriculum about recognizing and responding to the warning signs of depression and suicide; and additional

Youth who receive special education services under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA 2004) and especially young adults of transition age, should be involved in planning for life after high school as early as possible and no later than age 16. Transition services should stem from the individual youth’s needs and strengths, ensuring that planning takes into account his or her interests, preferences, and desires for the future.

Research links early leadership with increased self-efficacy and suggests that leadership can help youth to develop decision making and interpersonal skills that support successes in the workforce and adulthood. In addition, young leaders tend to be more involved in their communities, and have lower dropout rates than their peers. Youth leaders also show considerable benefits for their communities, providing valuable insight into the needs and interests of young people

Statistics reflecting the number of youth suffering from mental health, substance abuse, and co-occurring disorders highlight the necessity for schools, families, support staff, and communities to work together to develop targeted, coordinated, and comprehensive transition plans for young people with a history of mental health needs and/or substance abuse.

Nearly 30,000 youth aged out of foster care in Fiscal Year 2009, which represents nine percent of the young people involved in the foster care system that year. This transition can be challenging for youth, especially youth who have grown up in the child welfare system.

Research has demonstrated that as many as one in five children/youth have a diagnosable mental health disorder. Read about how coordination between public service agencies can improve treatment for these youth.

Civic engagement has the potential to empower young adults, increase their self-determination, and give them the skills and self-confidence they need to enter the workforce. Read about one youth’s experience in AmeriCorps National Civilian Community Corps (NCCC).