Recommendations for Improvement

There is room for improvement throughout the metrics for the Cornhusker 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

  • 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 youth experiencing homelessness with a delay or waiver of notification requirements.

  • The state should explicitly allow partial and alternative school credit accrual.

  • The state should allow youth under 18 to apply for health insurance coverage without parental consent.

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Systems

  • The state plan to end homelessness should be updated to include strategies specific to LGBTQ + youth.

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

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Environment​

  • 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.

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

Quick Facts: Nebraska

​​​Performance Breakdown
  • Law & Policy: 48% of metrics met
     
    • Laws authorizing comprehensive supports and services for youth experiencing homelessness: 50% of metrics met 
       

    • Preventing youth experiencing homelessness from coming into contact with the criminal and juvenile justice systems: 52% of metrics met 
       

    • Providing unaccompanied youth experiencing homelessness the opportunity to seek legal independence and live independently: 38% of metrics met
       

    • Addressing the educational needs of youth experiencing homelessness: 33% of metrics met 
       

    • Allowing youth experiencing homelessness to access critical supports and services: 50% of metrics met 
       

  • Systems: 72% of metrics met 
     
  • Environment: 0% of metrics met

State Score 2022: 44
State Ranking 2022: 46

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2022 Score

2021 Score

44

49

Nebraska Highlights

An area where Nebraska has moved the needle relative to other states is creating systems to address the needs of youth experiencing homelessness.

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Law & Policy

  • State law does not specifically criminalize running away.

  • The state allows unaccompanied youth to consent to mental health treatment (without parental consent).

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Systems​​

  • Youth are able to obtain state-issued identification cards without parental consent.

  • The state has an interagency council on homelessness.

  • There is a current state plan to end homelessness that contains a youth-specific strategy component.

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Environment

  • None.

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