Equality Utah leads efforts for LGBTQ civil rights at the state and local levels by: sponsoring LGBTQ legislation and opposing negative bills; lobbying elected officials; building coalitions; and empowering individuals and organizations alike to engage in the legislative process. Yearly during the election cycle, Equality Utah publishes a voter guide full of candidates who elect to take our survey on LGBTQ issues, and assigns them a score based on their responses. Equality Utah Foundation provides citizen lobby trainings through a coalition of partners, and diversity of inclusion trainings to Utah businesses through our Business Equality Leader program. The Foundation supplements these resources with a quarterly queer lecture series called QTalks.
Pride flags ignite hope and outrage in Utah, where youth suicide rate soars
Mission & Vision | Equality Utah
But at three local high schools here this fall, dozens of gay students and their supporters finally convened the first Gay-Straight Alliances in the history of this conservative, largely Mormon city. It was a turning point here and for the state, where administrators, teachers and even the Legislature have tried for years to block support groups for gay youths, calling them everything from inappropriate to immoral. The new alliances in St. George were part of a drastic rise this fall in the number of clubs statewide, reflecting new activism by gay and lesbian students, an organizing drive by a gay rights group and the intervention of the American Civil Liberties Union , which has threatened to sue districts that put up arbitrary hurdles. Last January, only 9 high schools in Utah had active Gay-Straight Alliances; by last month, the number had reached The alliances must still work around a state law that was expressly intended to stifle them by requiring parental permission to join and barring any discussions of sexuality or contraception, even to prevent diseases.
Youth Homelessness Statistics & Facts
Protective laws have become increasingly enacted since , despite the state's reputation as socially conservative and highly religious. Same-sex marriage has been legal since the state's ban was ruled unconstitutional by federal courts in In addition, statewide anti-discrimination laws now cover sexual orientation and gender identity in employment and housing, and the use of conversion therapy on minors is prohibited.
By Jennifer Dobner. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. On average, two teens a day are treated in Utah emergency rooms after suicide attempts, state health department data from to showed. At the time he spoke out, Smith said he did not know that Reese had already taken his life. He said Reese complained of being shoved around and subjected to anti-gay slurs.