No single narrative can capture the factors that drive so many young lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) young people to experience homelessness or housing instability. No single narrative can explain what living without a stable home feels like, or what barriers young people face when trying to access services. Yet, similar threads of narrative are woven into the stories of so many LGBTQ young people who are experiencing homelessness that it is important for advocates, policy makers, and funders to take the time to understand them. Understanding these narratives is critical in ensuring that programs and services are meeting the needs of youth.
This section explores how systems like foster care, juvenile justice, and schools can simultaneously function as both drivers to homelessness, and persistent barriers to obtaining housing stability. Similarly, the section examines how the experiences of living with physical and mental health issues, experiencing violence, and living with HIV both exacerbate the likelihood of experiencing housing instability and make time spent without stable housing more challenging.