has a resource which lists some of the charities that are campaigning against homelessness in the UK.
Coming out, or being outed as LGBTQ+, can lead to young people being made homeless. 24% of young people experiencing homelessness identify as being LGBTQ+.
Whilst there may be a crossover between LGBTQ+ allyship and allyship towards to young people at risk of homelessness, there are still some specific key points to keep in mind
how to be a better ally to young people at risk of homelessness:
take the time to learn about the myths surrounding homelessness:
Everybody’s experience of homeless is different. There are so many unforeseen factors that can cause a young person to be at risk of homelessness, including homophobia or transphobia at home, exiting from the care system, family and relationship breakdowns and unsafe living conditions.
Don’t make generalisations, assumptions or give unsolicited advice based on what you may have heard about young people at risk of homelessness. Take the time to educate yourself about what is factual and what is a myth. The British Council have more information about this in their resources section.
be aware of unconscious bias and check your privilege:
Much like being an ally to the LGBTQ+ community, self-reflection on your own biases and privileges is an important way to ensure you are being a better ally to young people at risk of homelessness.
To a certain extent, everyone will speak from a position of privilege at some point. It’s important to be intersectional and recognise that not every person experiences privilege in the same way, particularly when it comes to housing.
get familiar with resources that may helpful for young people experiencing homelessness:
Conduct research into the resources that are available to youth at risk of homelessness, once doing so you’ll have a better understanding of how to signpost young people to the right services.
Take the time to follow topics relating to housing and homelessness and keep up to date on the current issues being faced by those experiencing or at risk of homeless.
This could be as simple as keeping up to date with stories published by housing activists on social media, or reading recent news articles from publications that discuss housing and homelessness, such as The Big Issue and The Pavement.
Instead of making assumptions, listen to what those at risk of, or experiencing homelessness, are saying. Those who are directly impacted by these issue concerning homelessness have a first-hand understanding of the problems they’ve faced and what sort help that they need.
change how you refer to those experiencing or at risk of homelessness:
Be vigilant about your use of terminology when referring to topics concerning the homeless community in everyday conversations. Terminology is constantly evolving – Pallet Shelter have more information on this.
be an advocate for affordable housing and services in your community:
One way to be a better ally is by learning about and supporting initiatives that strive to play a role in ending homelessness.
This may involve advocating for affordable housing initiatives, volunteering, getting involved with local campaigning groups or supporting funding efforts for homeless services.
Its’ also a good idea to conduct research on your local MPs. Politicians have a say over your community policies – including on homelessness services and how they are funded. Take the time to learn what your local MP’s action plan is, as well as their stance on homelessness and the factors that cause it.