Writing Themselves In 4
The health and wellbeing of LGBTQA+ young people in Australia
In 2019, the Australian Research Centre in Sex, Health and Society (ARCSHS) at La Trobe University, with support from Rainbow Health Australia and Rainbow Network, asked 6,418 LGBTQA+ people aged 14 to 21 about their experiences with education, homelessness, harassment, assault, mental health, community connections and more. This is the largest ever study on the experiences of LGBTQA+ young people aged 14-21 in Australia.
The national report includes these findings and recommendations.
Writing Themselves In 4 received generous support from:
- The Victorian Department of Premier and Cabinet
- The Australian Capital Territory Government Office for LGBTIQ+ Affairs
- The New South Wales Department of Health
- SHINE SA, with support from the Office of the Chief Psychiatrist in South Australia.
These reports summarise key findings from Writing Themselves In 4 that are specific to the participants who were residents in the Australian Capital Territory (ACT), New South Wales (NSW), South Australia (SA) and Victoria (VIC) at the time of completion. They are designed to complement the national report by providing data relating to specific topics broken down at the state/territory level. These reports cover issues that can at times represent challenges for LGBTIQA+ young people (such as mental health, discrimination or abuse) as well as aspects of life that can enhance health and wellbeing (such as supportive relationships and community engagement).
For access to these reports in an alternative format, please contact email@example.com
The Writing Themselves In 4 research team is currently preparing a range of journal articles that focus in on specific issues in more detail. These will be added to this webpage as they are published online. If you are not able to access them via the links below, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
- Religious Conversion Practices and LGBTQA + Youth
This paper examines how the experience of conversion practices aimed at changing a young person’s sexuality or gender identity is associated with poor mental health outcomes, providing evidence in support of legislation that bans these practices.
- Suicidal ideation and suicide attempt among lesbian, gay, bisexual, pansexual, queer and asexual youth
This paper examines the factors and forces that shape the experience of suicidal ideation and suicide attempt among this group of young people within the Writing Themselves In 4 sample. It describes how verbal, physical and/or sexual harassment or assault are strongly associated with an increased likelihood of suicidal ideation or attempt. The paper also demonstrates how those from a religious family or household, and those living in regional or rural areas were more likely to have this experience.
- Illicit drug use among lesbian, gay, bisexual, pansexual, trans and gender diverse, queer and asexual young people in Australia: intersections and associated outcomes.
This paper examines the patterns of illicit drug use among LGBTQA+ young people, including who might be most likely to perceive their own use as problematic.
Key figures slide set
In this animation video, members of the study’s Youth Advisory Committee members share what the findings mean to them.
Replay the launch webinar
The launch event features two keynote presentations. First from the study's lead researcher Associate Professor Adam Bourne to present the key findings. The second is from co-author Marina Carman, Director of Rainbow Health Australia.
This is then followed by a panel discussion from co-author Associate Professor Jen Power. Thank you to our panelists Rory Blundell, Oliver Keane, Jasmine Phillips, Deb Tsorbaris and Tim Bavinton.
Highlights from the media
- "Coming out is getting easier for LGBTQA+ youth, but not for everyone" an article from ABC News Online
- "National survey finds safety and affirmation essential fundamental needs for LGBTQA+ young people" an article from ABC News Online
- "Tips for looking for roommates as an LGBTQI+ person" an article from ABC Everyday interviewing lead investigator Associate Professor Adam Bourne on the study findings and community board advisor Starlady
- Well Well Well on JOYFM a podcast interviewing in depth the lead investigator Associate Professor Adam Bourne
- Queer View Mirror on RRRFM a podcast interviewing two young trans and queer advocates and the lead investigator Associate Professor Adam Bourne discussing the findings of Writing Themselves In 4.
- "Over 80 percent of LGBTQA+ young people experience high levels of psychological distress, new aussie survey finds Mental health crisis among young LGBTQA Australians" an article from MTV News Australia