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State Highlights

Nebraska has not moved the needle relative to other states in any key areas, but there are some individual policies worth highlighting.

Law and Policy

Law & Policy

  • The state has a grievance process for students experiencing homelessness that complies with federal law.
  • State law does not specifically criminalize running away.

Systems

Systems

  • Youth under 18 are able to obtain state-issued identification cards without parental consent. 
  • The state has an interagency council on homelessness.

Environment

Environment

  • None.

 

Recommendations for Improvement

There is room for improvement throughout the metrics for the Cornhusker State, with emphasis on the Law & Policy and Environment categories. Laws authorizing comprehensive supports and services for youth experiencing homelessness and protecting the rights and interests of youth experiencing homelessness, including LGBTQ youth, should be prioritized.

Law and Policy

Law & Policy

  • Enact and fund a state law similar to the federal RHYA to provide key intervention and emergency services for youth experiencing homelessness.
  • Enact state law that allows youth in need of supervision to receive services without court involvement.

Systems

Systems

  • Draft and publish state plan to prevent and end youth homelessness, including strategies to address homelessness among LGBTQ youth.
  • Create a state entity - such as an Office of Homeless Youth Services -  that focuses solely on designing, implementing, and evaluating youth homelessness programs.

Environment

Environment

  • Organize and maintain a self-governing youth action board or council to inform youth homelessness policy within the state.
  • Require training about sexual orientation, gender identity and expression, healthy sexual development, or issues specific to LGBTQ youth for staff working in runaway and homeless youth systems.
  • Promote safe and inclusive environments in child welfare, juvenile justice, and runaway and homeless youth programs by providing protections based on sexual orientation and gender identity. 
  • Ban controversial and ineffective service provision that includes conversion therapy.

 

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