2. Homeless & Street-Involved Indigenous LGBTQ2S Youth in British Columbia: Intersectionality, Challenges, Resilience & Cues for Action

Street-involved youth and youth experiencing homelessness in Canada are disproportionately likely to be Indigenous: while the Canadian census estimates about 6% of youth in Canada are Indigenous, previous multi-city surveys of street-involved youth and youth experiencing homelessness in Western Canada have found more than half identify as Aboriginal, First Nations, Inuit or Métis.

The authors' overall purpose is to contribute to the limited existing research about LGBTQ2S Indigenous youth who are experiencing homelessness in Canada, based on their research in Western Canada. What are the specific challenges faced by youth experiencing homelessness who are both Indigenous and LGBTQ2S? What resilience factors help them cope despite these challenges? What resources do they access, how helpful are these supports, and what recommendations do young people offer for how services can be more supportive? This chapter will examine the limited existing research, and then expand that knowledge by drawing on data from the 2014 BC Homeless and Street-Involved Youth (HSIY) Survey to answer those questions. The authors will incorporate recommendations young people made, and consider how these findings fit within the relevant recommendations from the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada, although they note, as others have, that none of the recommendations specifically mention Two-Spirit people. 


Alex Abramovich
Jama Shelton
Publication Date: 
Canadian Observatory on Homelessness