Youth Experiencing Homelessness in Minnesota
Every three years, Wilder Research conducts a statewide study to better understand the prevalence, causes, circumstances and effects of homelessness.
In their most recent study, Wilder found that on any given night in the state of Minnesota, more than 6,000 unaccompanied youth are experiencing homelessness. Of these youth, 35 percent are age 17 and younger.
More than a third of the Minnesota youth experiencing homelessness in this survey were parents. Among those, 26 percent had a child with them at the time of the survey.
Youth on Their Own
Young people age 24 and younger are the most likely to be homeless.
- Nine out of 10 youth on their own had at least one adverse childhood experience, including trauma and abuse.
- More than half (57 percent) of youth on their own reported significant mental health issues.
- Homelessness disproportionately affects youth of color, who make up 73 percent of all Minnesota youth on their own.
- Nearly half (47 percent) of youth have been homeless for more than a year.
- Youth younger than age 24 are the least likely to use shelters out of the total population experiencing homelessness.
Childhood histories of trauma and long-term health issues are common:
|Adverse childhood experiences||Youth on their own age 24 and younger||Long-term health issues||Youth on their own age 24 and younger|
|Physically abused as a child||46%||Chronic physical health condition||36%|
|Sexually abused as a child||30%||Significant mental illness||57%|
|Neglected as a child||29%||Substance abuse disorder||13%|
|Ever in out-of-home placements||54%||Evidence of traumatic brain injury||19%|
|Has a parent who has been incarcerated||59%||At least one of the above||84%|
|At least one of the above||89%||Two or more of the above||39%|
Learn more about Minnesota youth served by LSS and some of the events that lead to their housing instability: