U.S. states should improve access to identification cards for homeless youth, particularly those who are lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender (LGBT), argues a new report from the Center for American Progress (CAP), a progressive national think tank.
Homeless youth, who are disproportionately LGBT, can face roadblocks to obtaining state-issued identification, which is necessary to access various programs and services, including those that could help them gain housing and employment, the report says.
CAP's research showed that many states fall short in terms of ID card accessibility for homeless youth.
The report cites employment discrimination as well as barriers to health care and family supports as some of the key challenges threatening LGBT women and their economic well-being.
America's more than 5 million LGBT women are at increased risk for financial insecurity due to stigma, discrimination as well as anti-LGBT and outdated policies, according to the researchers.
"Even at a time when the public is showing increased understanding and acceptance of LGBT people and their relationships, the unique concerns and struggles of LGBT women are largely absent in the national conversation," said Laura Durso, director of the LGBT Research and Communications Project at the Center for American Progress, a Washington, D.C.-based think tank. "Women who are LGBT have the same concerns as other women, but they face added challenges and worries -- not just because of their gender, but also because of who they are and whom they love."