Quick Facts: Kentucky

​​​​​​​​Performance Breakdown
  • Law & Policy: 68% of metrics met
     
    • Laws authorizing comprehensive supports and services for youth experiencing homelessness: 42% of metrics met 
       

    • Preventing youth experiencing homelessness from coming into contact with the criminal and juvenile justice systems: 48% of metrics met 
       

    • Providing unaccompanied youth experiencing homelessness the opportunity to seek legal independence and live independently: 88% of metrics met
       

    • Addressing the educational needs of youth experiencing homelessness: 100% of metrics met 
       

    • Allowing youth experiencing homelessness to access critical supports and services: 89% of metrics met 
       

  • Systems: 100% of metrics met 
     
  • Environment: 76% of metrics met

State Score 2021: 75
State Ranking 2021: 10

2021 Score

2020 Score

57

75

Kentucky Highlights

 Kentucky has moved the needle relative to other states including creating systems to address the needs of youth experiencing homelessness, providing unaccompanied youth experiencing homelessness the opportunity to seek legal independence and live independently, and addressing the educational needs of youth experiencing homelessness.

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Law & Policy

  • The state does not consider runaway youth as delinquent or a status offender.

  • The state explicitly allows partial and alternative school credit accrual for homeless youth through regulations.

  • The state explicitly allows unaccompanied youth under 18 to apply for health insurance coverage (without parental consent).

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Systems

  • There is a current state plan to end homelessness.

    • The state plan has a "youth" component.

  • There is a state entity (Office of homeless youth services, homeless youth state coordinator, commission on homeless youth, etc.) that focuses solely on youth homelessness.

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Environment

  • The state promotes safe and inclusive environments in juvenile justice programs by providing protections based on sexual orientation and gender identity.

  • The state maintains a community advisory board for youth that informs youth homelessness policy.

  • The state requires training about sexual orientation, gender identity and expression, healthy sexual, development or issues specific to LGBTQ+ youth for staff working in RHY Systems.

Recommendations for Improvement

There is room for improvement throughout the metrics for the Bluegrass 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.

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Law & Policy

  • Allow shelters to take in homeless youth with a delay or waiver of notification requirements.

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Systems

  • None.

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Environment

  • Ban harmful and ineffective service provision that includes conversion therapy.

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