Happy Pride Month!
June is pride month, and at Covenant House we celebrate equity, inclusion and pride.
Youth who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender or queer/questioning are at much greater risk of becoming homeless than their non-LGBTQ friends and classmates. In fact, a groundbreaking study of youth homelessness in the United States in 2017 by Chapin Hall of the University of Chicago says their risk is 120% higher than that of their peers.
Not only are LGBTQ youth at higher risk of homelessness, they also face, among all young people experiencing homelessness, greater risk of "high levels of hardship," according to a follow-up report by Chapin Hall in 2018. Hardship includes higher rates of assault, trauma, exchanging sex for basic needs, and early death, the report says. It notes that black youth who identify as LGBTQ, particularly young men, have the highest rates of homelessness.
At Covenant House Illinois, we take an extra step to ensure that our home is welcoming, affirming and safe for LGBTQ youth and all youth experiencing homelessness.
“This is not complicated: we are called to love unconditionally and with absolute respect all young people facing homelessness” says Kevin Ryan, president and CEO of Covenant House International.
At Covenant House, we pride ourselves on the diversity that characterized the youth in our homes and staff who welcome and serve them. We are not a niche shelter that welcomes only youth of one gender or one orientation, one race or one class. All are welcome here and all are received with absolute respect and unconditional love.
This pride month, we hope you’ll join us as we provide youth experiencing homelessness with shelter, safety and community for a better tomorrow.