To grow up healthy, kids need a lot of things: a reliable source of food, a school where they can thrive, a home where they feel safe. But finding shelter is, unfortunately, harder than it should be for many children.
Over 4 million American kids face homelessness every year. And now, research shows, they may have health consequences because of it.
A new study of over 100,000 youth found that those facing homelessness were three times more likely to die by suicide than housed youth. It also found that homeless youth were up to five times more likely to report current substance use than housed youth.
And they were up to thirteen times more likely to report lifetime use of high-risk drugs. According to the researchers, these findings only reinforce the urgency of ensuring all kids have housing.