NEW YORK – LGBT youth experience nearly three times as much bullying and harassment online as non-LGBT youth, but also find greater peer support, access to health information and opportunities to be civically engaged, according to a new report released today by GLSEN, the Gay, Lesbian & Straight Education Network.
The study, “Out Online: The Experiences of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Youth on the Internet,” is based on national surveys of 5,680 students in 6-12th grade, and is the first to examine in-depth the experiences of LGBT youth online.
“The Internet impacts almost all aspects of our lives, but is particularly entrenched in the lives of youth, who are the most connected people online in our society,” said Dr. Eliza Byard, GLSEN’s Executive Director.
“LGBT youth continue to face extraordinary obstacles in their day-to-day lives whether at school or online, but the Internet can be a valuable source of information and support when they have no one or nowhere else left to turn to. As social media evolve, so must our efforts to serve LGBT youth to ensure their safety, health and well-being,” she said