This study uses 2016 state-wide survey data from 9th and 11th grade students in Minnesota schools. The analytic sample was limited to students who reported a LGBQ identity, and responded to victimization items (N=8,136). LCA indicators were seven items assessing bias-based victimization in the previous 30 days (race, religion, gender, gender expression, perceived as LGBQ, disability, weight, appearance). Demographic covariates (age, sexual orientation, gender, race) and measures of emotional distress (PHQ-2 depression screener, suicidal ideation, suicide attempt) and school connectedness (5 items) will also be examined by class. The LCA was run using a manual three-step approach to test class differences in mean levels of emotional distress and school connectedness in the final step (Mplus; Asparouhov & Muthén, 2014).
The five-class model was the best-fitting LCA model, taking into account fit indices, interpretability, and degree of parsimony (Collins & Lanza, 2010). Classes emerged characterized by: high levels of all types of victimization (5.1%); high sexual orientation, gender expression, and physical appearance-attributed victimization (31.0%); sexual orientation and gender expression-attributed victimization (13.2%); weight and physical appearance-attributed victimization (18.1%); and low levels of bias-based victimization (61.3%). In the final step of the analysis, demographic covariates will be examined as predictors of class membership, and levels of emotional distress and school connectedness will also be examined across classes.
Typologies reflecting intersections of bias-based victimization, and their relationship to LGBQ youths’ experiences of emotional distress and school connectedness, will be discussed. Implications will synthesize and challenge previous recommendations for preventing and addressing bias-based victimization to encourage policymakers, school administrators, and teachers to attend to intersections which shape LGBQ youth’s mental health and well-being.