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56.4% of young LGBQA reported suicidal ideation, 8.9% had suicide attempt in past 12 months

Those younger than 18 years, lesbian (compared with gay) identifying, those living in rural or remote locations (compared with inner city), those reporting any verbal, physical, or sexual harassment or assault based on sexual orientation or gender identity, or who had a religious family or household, or had experienced conversion practices in the past 12 months reported higher levels of suicidal ideation or suicide attempts.

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There is a higher-than-usual levels of suicidal ideation and suicide attempts among young LGBQA people, highlighting the need for the ongoing inclusion of LGBQA youth as a priority population for suicide prevention.

This is according to a study – “Suicidal ideation and suicide attempts among lesbian, gay, bisexual, pansexual, queer, and asexual youth: differential impacts of sexual orientation, verbal, physical, or sexual harassment or assault, conversion practices, family or household religiosity, and school experience” – that appeared in LGBT Health.

In the study that was done by Adam O. Hill, Anthony Lyons, Jennifer Power, Natalie Amos, Olivier Ferlatte, Jami Jones, Marina Carman and Adam Bourne, 4,370 cisgender LGBQA participants aged 14–21 years were surveyed from September to October 2019. Multivariable logistic regression analyses were performed to examine significant factors associated with suicidal ideation and suicide attempts in the past 12 months.

The study found that overall, 56.4% of participants reported suicidal ideation and 8.9% a suicide attempt in the past 12 months.

Multivariable regression results show that participants aged younger than 18 years, lesbian (compared with gay) identifying, those living in rural or remote locations (compared with inner city), those reporting any verbal, physical, or sexual harassment or assault based on sexual orientation or gender identity, or who had a religious family or household, or had experienced conversion practices in the past 12 months reported higher levels of suicidal ideation or suicide attempts.

Also, those who reported feeling part of their school reported lower levels of suicidal ideation and suicide attempts.

For the researchers, “the findings illustrate key factors associated with a greater risk of suicidality among young LGBQA people. These findings can be used to inform the provision of tailored support services, including culturally safe suicide prevention programs and efforts to address stigma, discrimination, and conversion practices.”

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