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Quick Facts: Mississippi

​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​Performance Breakdown
  • Law & Policy: 65% of metrics met
    • Laws authorizing comprehensive supports and services for youth experiencing homelessness: 58% of metrics met 

    • Preventing youth experiencing homelessness from coming into contact with the criminal and juvenile justice systems: 57% of metrics met 

    • Providing unaccompanied youth experiencing homelessness the opportunity to seek legal independence and live independently: 100% of metrics met

    • Addressing the educational needs of youth experiencing homelessness: 17% of metrics met 

    • Allowing youth experiencing homelessness to access critical supports and services: 78% of metrics met 

  • Systems: 22% of metrics met 
  • Environment: 6% of metrics met

State Score 2022: 47
State Ranking 2022: 40


2022 Score

2021 Score



Mississippi Highlights

One area where Mississippi has moved the needle relative to other states is in providing unaccompanied youth experiencing homelessness the opportunity to seek legal independence and live independently.


Law & Policy

  • State law provides partial or full contract rights for youth experiencing homelessness.

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

  • The state allows unaccompanied youth under 18 to apply for health insurance coverage on their own.



  • The State Department of Transportation has systems in place to address proof of residency requirements to receive a state-issued identification card.

  • The state allows youth to obtain a state-issued identification card without parental consent.



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

Recommendations for Improvement

There is room for improvement throughout the metrics for the Magnolia State, with emphasis on the Systems and Environment categories. Policies 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 & Policy

  • Enact and fund a state law similar to the federal RHYA to provide key intervention and emergency services for youth experiencing homelessness.

  • The state should allow shelters to take in homeless youth with a delay or waiver of notification requirements.

  • The state should allow minors, regardless of their legal status, to consent to examination and treatment relating to a sexual assault (without parental consent).

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



  • The state should create and adopt a public plan to end homelessness that includes youth (and specifically LGBTQ+ youth).

  • The state should create an entity – such as an Office of Youth Homelessness Services – that focuses solely on designing, implementing, and evaluating youth homelessness programs.



  • The state should establish and maintain stipends for a community advisory board that informs youth homelessness policy (Youth Action Board).

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

  • The state should establish nondiscrimination protections for LGBTQ+ youth in youth homelessness services.

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