Black Trans, Nonbinary Youth Have Higher Suicide Risk Than Cisgender Queer Peers

March 29, 2024

News Type:  Weekly Spark, Weekly Spark News


A new research brief calls on all adults to help prevent suicide among Black LGBTQ+ youth by reducing their experiences of discrimination. Produced by The Trevor Project, the brief includes survey data that show Black trans and nonbinary youth especially need support.

In the survey, just over one in five Black trans and nonbinary youth reported a suicide attempt in the past year, more than double the number of their Black cisgender LGBQ peers. Both groups reported experiencing high rates of discrimination based on their race or LGBTQ+ identities, with the highest rates among Black trans, nonbinary, or questioning youth. Discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity or expression was found to be associated with increased suicide risk.

The authors of the brief encouraged adults working with Black LGBTQ+ youth to support all aspects of their identities as they cope with the combined impact of multiple types of bias. In addition to recommending tailored services to help Black LGBTQ+ youth navigate discrimination, the authors added that all adults can help meet the greater goal of stopping discrimination in the first place.

Black LGBTQ+ youth are not inherently at risk of suicide, said Derrick Matthews, The Trevor Project’s director of research science and lead author of the brief. Multiple factors place them at risk, including mistreatment by others. “It’s time to step up our efforts to let Black trans and nonbinary young people know that we are here for them by working to reduce their experiences of discrimination—and reminding them that this world really is a better place because they are in it,” said Matthews.

Spark Extra! Check out our guides to supporting LGBTQIA2S+ youth.