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SFSU granted nearly $900,000 for study of gay youth, their families


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June 21, 2002

SFSU researchers have received a three-year, $876,965 grant to conduct the first-ever study of physical and mental health outcomes of lesbian, gay and bisexual (LGB) youth who disclose their sexual orientation to family members during adolescence.

Funded by The California Endowment, the state's largest health foundation, the study is also the first to comprehensively explore sexual orientation in Latino families.

Earlier studies of LGB youth have shown higher rates of suicide, substance use, risky sexual behaviors, victimization, depression, chronic stress and pregnancy than their heterosexual peers. However, little attention has been focused on the youths' families and their responses after the youths "come out."

Caitlin Ryan, director of policy studies at the SFSU Institute on Sexuality, Inequality and Health, and Rafael Díaz, SFSU professor of human sexuality studies and ethnic studies, will work closely with Northern California community agencies such as the Gay Straight Alliance Network and Adolescent Health Working Group to study white and Latino teen-agers and their families.

The study's results will be used to develop training materials and assessment tools for health and mental health providers and school practitioners, as well as a guide for health providers on family care and support for LGB youth and a resource directory for LGB youth.

For more information, see the press release.

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Last modified June 21, 2002, by the Office of Public Affairs