A new fact sheet on Youth and Suicide in the District of Columbia is available from the Office of the State Superintendent of Education (OSSE). 16% of High School youth reported attempting suicide in the past twelve months, a number more than double the national average. Among these students, our Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender High School students are at significantly higher risk with little to no progress in addressing this health disparity since we started looking at these numbers in 2013.
Eddy Ameen, a member of the DC Center Youth Working Group who has been working on this issue for many years stated “While I hope the number improves on next YRBS, we ALL need to continue improving our safety nets TODAY with and for youth in our community.”
This data is available because questions about sexual orientation and gender identity are included in the Youth Risk Behavior Survey (YRBS). Legislation is currently before the District of Columbia to require this data collection on LGBTQ individuals in the YRBS and other survey instruments like the Behvioral Risk Factor Surveillance Survey (BRFSS). Read more about the legislation here.
To see more information about the Youth Risk Behavior Survey or other LGBT health and wellness data in the District of Columbia visit thedccenter.org/data.