Quick Facts: Ohio

​​​Performance Breakdown
  • Law & Policy: 54% 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: 63% 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: 50% of metrics met 

  • Systems: 61% of metrics met 
  • Environment: 35% of metrics met

State Score 2021: 52
State Ranking 2021: 28

2021 Score

2020 Score



Ohio Highlights

Some areas where Ohio has moved the needle relative to other states include providing youth the opportunity to seek legal independence, allowing youth to access critical supports and services, maintaining a multi-sector approach to ending homelessness, and and promoting safety and inclusion by providing protections for LGBTQ youth within key state programs.


Law & Policy

  • •The state allows youth in foster care to access extended foster care services to age 21 under certain circumstances and allows youth who have exited the foster care system after 18 to re-enter through the age of 21.

  • State law provides youth experiencing homelessness some contract rights.

  • The state allows youth to earn partial or alternative school credit.

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



  • There is a current state plan to end homelessness that includes a youth component.

  • The state provides tuition waivers for foster youth



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

Recommendations for Improvement

There is room for improvement throughout the metrics for the Buckeye State, with emphasis on the Law & Policy and Environment categories. Enacting and funding a state RHYA law, implementing a coordinated state government response to preventing and ending youth homelessness, and protecting the rights and interests of youth experiencing homelessness, including LGBTQ youth, should be prioritized.


Law & Policy

  • The state should pass a law that funds and provides oversight and regulation to youth homelessness services.

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

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



  • 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.



  • Organize and maintain a self-governing youth action board or council to inform youth homelessness policy within the state.

  • 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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