Housing is an LGBTQ issue and #CarsonCant protect us

Ben Carson at the 2016 Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) | Photo credit: Gage Skidmore

You might know someone who was kicked out of their home for being LGBTQ, like Ryan, Jackie, or Daniel. LGBTQ youth are overrepresented among the homeless population (about 40% vs. 10%), and, unsurprisingly, family rejection is by far the main reason cited by service providers for youth ending up on the streets. Homelessness is just one of the many problems facing LGBTQ youth, but it’s one of the biggest. Not having a safe place to stay can prevent them from going to school, keeping a job, and taking care of their health.

Housing is an LGBTQ issue, which is why Ben Carson is an outrageous choice for Secretary of Housing and Urban Development.

Carson has said that prison turns people gay. This is even more offensive when you consider the fact that LGBTQ inmates are more than ten times as likely to be sexually assaulted in prison.

He has dismissed transgender people as “the height of absurdity.” Two-thirds of trans people fail to get proper accommodation in homeless shelters. Now, someone who doesn’t even understand the concept of gender identity might be in charge of an agency that is supposed to protect people from housing discrimination.

Some people who lived out and proud are being forced back into the closet as they age, because of discrimination in senior homes. If you live in one of the 30 states where you can legally be denied housing based on your sexual orientation or gender identity, don’t expect any help from someone who believes that gay marriage will lead to mass killings, equated being gay to pedophilia and bestiality, and has suggested that anti-LGBT bakers might poison the wedding cake of a same-sex couple.

If Carson is confirmed as HUD Secretary, LGBTQ people can expect to be left out in the cold.