VANCOUVER—The longer a school has a gay-straight alliance or a Gender and Sexuality Alliance (GSA) club, the safer students feel at school, according to new research from the University of B.C., The Star-Vancouver reports.
UBC nursing professor Elizabeth Saewyc and her team have found that both LGBT and straight teens feel safer at school for each additional year the school’s GSA is operating, The Star reports.
“That increase in safety doesn’t plateau,” said Saewyc, who is also the executive director of the university’s Stigma and Resilience Among Vulnerable Youth Centre.
Previous research has shown that when a GSA has been around for three years or more, there’s a lower rate of suicidal thoughts in both gay and straight kids, Saewyc told The Star-Vancouver.
The new paper, published in the SSM Population Health journal, used new statistical modeling and data from B.C.’s 2003, 2008 and 2013 adolescent health surveys. Youth at 135 schools, in grades seven-12, were asked how safe they felt at school.