January 30, 2014 | by Staff reports
GSAs reduce suicide risks study finds
Gay Straight Alliance, GSA, Bullis School, gay news, Washington Blade, GSAs

A GSA Student Summit was held last year at the Bullis School. (Washington Blade file photo by Michael Key)

BRITISH COLUMBIA — Students at Canadian schools that have gay-straight alliances (GSAs) are less likely to have suicidal thoughts and to attempt suicide according to a new study from the University of British Columbia, Health Canal reports.

This is true for both LGBT and straight students, researchers found.

LGBT youth and straight students in schools with anti-homophobia policies and GSAs had lower odds of discrimination, suicidal thoughts and suicide attempts, primarily when both strategies were enacted, or when the polices and GSAs had been in place for three years or more, Health Canal reports.

Published in the International Journal of Child, Youth and Family Studies and funded by the Canadian Institute of Health Research, the study drew on data from the British Columbia Adolescent Health Survey to test the link between school policies and programs, discrimination due to perceived sexual orientation and suicidal thoughts and attempts, the article said.

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