As agencies that work with youth experiencing homelessness, we commit to grounding our work in an anti-racist framework, ending racial disparities in the homeless services sector, confronting structural racism that exists within our agencies, and committing to anti-oppression practices.
We recognize that liberation and shared power needs to be at the core of our collaborative work and that structures rooted in white supremacy must be dismantled. Young people become homeless for a variety of reasons, but there are two subpopulations that are disproportionately impacted by homelessness: Black and LGBTQ+ young people.
The Voices of Youth Count, a research project by Chapin Hall at the University of Chicago found that LGBTQ youth are at more than double the risk of homelessness compared to non-LGBTQ peers and youth who identified as both LGBTQ and Black or multiracial had some of the highest rates of homelessness. Given the disproportionately high numbers of LGBTQ+ young people and youth of color who experience homelessness, these two subpopulations must be placed at the center of efforts to address youth homelessness in order to end youth homelessness.
The Hollywood Homeless Youth Partnership’s work to advance equity is two fold: In order to create a system of care rooted in liberation, healing, and shared power with young people experiencing homelessness, we recognize that we must transform not only our collaborative, but the entire system of care. As a collaborative, we support learning around anti-racist and anti-oppression practices and provide a space to share learning around this work. The values that guide the HHYP’s work are:
We value innovation, courage, and risk-taking as we co-create a system of care with Black, Indigenous, People of Color (BIPOC), and LGBTQ+ young people that is free of oppression.
We value the voices and experiences of people who are closest to the issue of homelessness: young people with lived experience, BIPOC folks, LGBTQ+ people, and people with intersectional identities. We center their voices and experiences in every part of our collaborative work and honor each individual’s value, lived experience and intersectional identities.
We believe in the power of collaboration as a group working toward the common goal of ending youth homelessness. We value the collective wisdom that exists in our group. We recognize that young people, HHYP leadership, agency staff, other youth-serving systems, and the broader community have equally important roles in realizing our vision. In our collaborative work, we value trust, accountability, and radical candor.
We believe that ending youth homelessness and dismantling the oppression that young people experience requires the voice, input, and expertise of young people and all the systems they interact with. We will partner with the community and young people to create change around systems of inequity.
Understanding the demographics & experiences of Black youth and their non-Black peers
We compared the demographics and experiences of Black youth and their Non-Black peers receiving services at HHYP agencies in Fiscal year 20/21. Race and ethnicity data was collected on 2,106 young people across all agencies. This information provides an opportunity for service providers, funders, and policy makers to design more responsive services necessary to end the disproportionate impact of homelessness in the Black community.
Race & Ethnicity of youth service by HHYP agencies
Black youth are overrepresented in HHYP services
LGBTQ+ young people