Youth Advocacy Day 2013 is taking place on February 22 in Olympia, WA. The focus of this day is about ensuring youth issues are addressed in this legislative session. Join hundreds of youth, nonprofit leaders, and concerned citizens as they lobby for statewide legislation supporting homeless youth, youth in foster care, and youth immigrants.

The Mockingbird Society, along with its partners Equal Rights Washington and Allyship, are organizing the community to lobby at the State Capitol on from 9 AM until 2 PM. Youth and young adults impacted by foster care and homelessness, and their supporters, will advocate our elected leaders to support youth-inspired solutions.

Youth often become homeless because of familial disruption like divorce and abuse, being aged out of the foster care system, and being in families which can’t handle their mental health and drug issues. High proportions are thrown out because their families and other support structures have a conflict over their sexual orientation and gender identity.

It is estimated that as many as 40% of the 600,000 homeless youth across the country are LGBTQ, well above their 5% estimated representation in the population. The number of LGBTQ homeless youth seems to be growing as youth come out at an earlier age and in greater numbers in reaction to a society that is more open about LGBTQ issues. Homeless youth are at very high risk of problems with educational achievement, drugs and alcohol, and becoming victims of crime, violence, and exploitation.

Learn more about and register today for Youth Advocacy Day 2013.

Wearing pink clothes to the event is encouraged. Carpools are being organized.

As part of our commitment to supporting our youth, Pride Foundation is excited to announce a new four-year initiative, supported by the Bill & Melinda Gate Foundation, that will fund innovative, collaborative approaches that address the unique needs of homeless lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) youth in Washington State and Portland, Oregon. Learn more.

Jeff Hedgepeth is Pride Foundation’s Grants Programs Officer. Email Jeff.

Posted In: Blog, Connecting Leaders, Blog, Washington