ABC13 town hall to examine rising barriers for LGBTQ+ youth

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) — While the past year has brought a variety of challenges to so many, new data from The Trevor Project reveals troubling disparities facing our LGBTQ+ youth, including an upward trend in suicidal thoughts and trouble accessing mental health care.

According to a 2022 study, 45% of LGBTQ+ youth reported they seriously considered attempting suicide in the last year, while 60% who wanted mental health care said they were not able to get it.

ABC13, Houston’s news leader, is gathering experts for a town hall Thursday (7-8 p.m. CST), to examine issues contributing to the well-being of our lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and questioning children, from anti-LGBTQ+ legislation filed in Austin to the impact of current events like the COVID-19 pandemic.

RELATED: Full list of Houston LGBTQ+ community resources

Eyewitness News reporter Pooja Lodhia is bringing together leaders on the frontlines of these issues, who will answer your questions and connect you with resources that can save lives.

Panelists for Thursday’s town hall include:

  • Constable Alan Rosen, Harris Co. Precinct 1
  • Andrea Segovia, TENT senior policy and field advisor
  • Bekah Bryant, mother and LGBTQ+ rights advocate
  • Diamond Stylz, Black Trans Women Inc. executive director
  • Harrison Guy, community organizer
  • Laura Kanter, The Montrose Center youth services manager
  • Sunny Bryant, 8-year-old transgender girl and LGBTQ+ rights advocate
  • Taryn Biggs, The Mahogany Project

The Trevor Project reports barriers to mental health services, lack of community or family support, and victimization at home or school are all risk factors of suicide for LGBTQ+ teens.

But, there is hope. The report also reveals that efforts to encourage and inspire our LGBTQ+ youth can have a positive impact, as data shows nurturing homes and schools for these children can cut the risk of suicide to nearly half.

You can check out the full list of resources for LGBTQ+ youth below.

The virtual town hall will stream exclusively on, ABC13’s smartphone apps, and ABC13’s connected TV apps on Amazon Fire TV, Roku, Apple TV, and Google TV. Just search “ABC13 Houston.”

ABC13 town hall to examine rising barriers for LGBTQ+ youth

Houston LGBTQ+ Youth & Family Resources

If you or someone you know is in crisis, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255) or contact the Crisis Text Line by texting HOME to 741741. You can also reach the LGBT Switchboard 24-Hour Helpline at 713-529-3211, Trans Lifeline at 877-565-8860 (U.S.) or 877-330-6366 (Canada), and The Trevor Project at 866-488-7386.

Hatch Youth/Hatch Jr.
As Houston’s oldest, currently active, social group for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and questioning (LGBTQ) youth, Hatch Youth is dedicated to empowering adolescents ages 13-20 to become responsible citizens and positive contributors to society. The program provides a safe, affirming social environment, health education, programming and role model/peer support. Hatch Jr. serves youth ages 7-12.

For more details:

Montrose Grace Place
Every Monday and Thursday at 6:00 p.m, Montrose Grace Place opens its doors to homeless youth ages 13-24, of all sexual orientations and gender identities. Youth night is an evening of food, mentorship, and skills building. The youth and volunteers share a seated, family-style meal, followed by an interactive lesson, craft, or other activity. Additionally, youth are able to “shop” in our closet of donated supplies, which include clothing, shoes, toiletries, bus cards, and snacks.
For more details:

PFLAG Houston
When your child or loved one comes to you and shares that they are LGBTQ, you may not know where to even begin to show them you love and support them. PFLAG is made up of moms, dads, family and friends who can help by sharing their stories and experiences.

For more details:

The Mahogany Project
The Mahogany Project seeks to reduce social isolation, stigma and acts of injustice in TQLGB+ communities of color. The organization raises awareness and advocates for the expansion of social, health and education services, and coordinates activities to improve, impact and engage with the community.

For more details, call 832-275-8871.

The Montrose Center
The Montrose Center empowers our community-primarily LGBTQ individuals and their families-to live healthier, more fulfilling lives. Because LGBTQ persons face numerous health disparities compared to the general population, the center has embraced an integrated care model with one-stop access to behavioral health and support services, adult primary care and psychiatry, and free wellness programs that empower individuals to proactively participate in their own care.

For more details:

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