Study: LGBQ teens have elevated suicide risk over heterosexual peers

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WHITE PLAINS -

LGBQ teenagers are more than three times as likely to attempt suicide than their heterosexual peers, according to a new study in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

Shepard Verbas, the manager of programs and services at The Loft in White Plains sees firsthand the struggles LGBQ youth face on a daily basis. Verbas believes a lot of that has to do with the changing landscape under President Donald Trump.

"A lot of our members are anxious," Verbas says. "They don't really understand the news that's happening and it's really hard to keep on top of everything that's happening, honestly."

Despite recent strides for LGBQ rights, like marriage equality at the national level, Verbas says more needs to be done.

"We've come a long way. We have marriage equality now, but that doesn't mean that life is easy," Verbas says. "The answer always comes back to supportive environments from parents and a supportive environment from school systems."

Verbas urges anyone in the LGBQ community who's thinking about suicide to call the Trevor Lifeline at 1-866-488-7386.

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