Office of Children and Family Services


Resources for LGBTQ Children and Youth

Change can be difficult to accept and understand, and the changes that accompany the transition through adolescence are challenging for many young people. For many Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Questioning (or Queer) youth, there can be added challenges. These youth, their peers, and their families can often benefit from supportive and educational programs that foster acceptance.

OCFS is here to lend support. View the original OCFS publication, "LGBTQ: Sexual Orientation Questions of Youth."

According to a February 2013 Gallup Poll, nearly four-percent of New Yorkers surveyed said they identified as LGBT. This self-identification can sometimes be a difficult process for children and youth, but it is the hope of OCFS that this site will promote understanding and support by providing links to important resources.

The Human Rights Campaign (HRC) conducted a survey of more 10,000 LBGT-identified youth aged 13 to 17, and compiled the nationwide results in a 2012 report called Growing Up LGBT in America. It indicated:

  • Four out of ten said their communities are not accepting of LGBT people.
  • LGBT youth are twice as likely as their peers to say they have been physically assaulted at school.
  • More than a quarter said their biggest problems are not feeling accepted by their families, being bullied at school, and a fear of being "out."
  • Nine out of ten said they are out to their close friends. About 56 percent said they are "out" to their immediate families, and only a quarter reported being "out" to their extended families.
  • About three-quarters of youth surveyed said most of their peers do not have a problem with their LGBT identity.
  • An overwhelming number – 92 percent – said they hear negative messages about being LGBT, largely in school, on the Internet, and from their peers.
  • Still, more than three-quarters of respondents said they know "things will get better."

External links are provided for the convenience of the user. Such use does not constitute an official endorsement or approval by the Office of Children and Family Services. When users click an external link and leave the OCFS website, they should be aware that they are subject to the privacy and security policies of the external site.


Hotlines are a way to find immediate help if LGBT children or youth are having problems at school, at home, or in their communities. Call-takers at the following nationwide numbers are well-versed in helping members of the LGBT community and their loved ones.


Homeless and Runaway Youth

Local Pride Centers and School-Based Clubs

General Online Resources

Legal Information and Assistance

Medical and Mental Health Information

New York City Area Services

Real-Time Resources for Youth, Families, and Allies

Religious Groups (LGBT-Affirming)


Support for the Future

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