Letter to the Editor | LGBTQIA community needs better mental health resources
May 5, 2019
Did you know LGBTQIA students are over three times more likely than hetero-normative students to commit suicide? But, where is the help needed for these students? What if I told you that this risk could be drastically reduced?
Much of the reason for the lack of funding and attention given to these students stems from the small amount of research about this issue. The American Foundation for Suicide Prevention cites LGBTQIA suicide as an individualized issue, and states there are no specific grants given to or provided by universities for related purposes. All college students cannot be treated the same when it comes to counseling, especially with suicidality and other mental health issues. Sexual minorities are at the largest risk for attempting and committing suicide on college campuses; therefore, more resources need to be geared toward supporting the LGBTQIA community specifically.
To combat this issue on college campuses, we need to turn to the law and have gender orientation recognized on death certificates. This will allow research to display more accurate statistics on this epidemic. We also need more funding to conduct this research. Furthermore, this issue needs to be largely recognized by all universities before a difference can be made. It is up to us as students to use our voices to make a difference for those who are forced to remain silent.
Kaylee Smith is a sophomore in LAS.