Homophobia in Shelters Scare Homeless Gay Youths Away

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Homophobia in Shelters Scare Homeless Gay Youths Away

by Kilian Melloy, EDGE Boston Contributor

Monday Jul 23, 2007
British advocates for the homeless have noted a trend in young homeless men bartering a place to sleep for sexual favors.

According to a story posted today at the web site for Inside Housing, young gay men have turned to the Internet to make contacts with men who can provide them sleeping accommodations in exchange for sex, because the young homeless men in question fear that they will be treated poorly by shelters.

Several groups dedicated to helping the homeless have made note of this trend, the article said, including the Albert Kennedy Trust, St. Mungo’s, and Stonewall Housing.

“A lot of young people coming to us are using Internet cafes and gay bars too often when they are homeless,” said the chief executive for the Albert Kennedy Trust, Tim Sigsworth.

Sigsworth said at the Homeless Link conference, which took place last week, that young gay homeless men were resorting to bars and cafes to find men with whom to make the exchange of sex for shelter. He also said that homeless gay men were using the Internet to arrange for hookups.
“Sometimes it will be a one-night stand but end up as 10 nights because it’s a bed,” Sigsworth said.

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