A new study has found over half of secondary school students think coming out as LGBT+ leads to bullying.
In results revealed this week, 52% of the 278 secondary school students surveyed said they believed someone would be bullied in their school if they came out.
The online poll was conducted last year by Irish LGBT youth charity BeLonG To Youth Services, through Empathy Research.
"Those four years can be a very stressful, very lonely, and very isolated time"
Moninne Griffith, chief executive of Belong To, commented (as per The Times): “Coming out is still the top issue for LGBT young people.”
Speaking about the time between ages 12 and 16, Griffith added: "Those four years can be a very stressful, very lonely, and very isolated time.
“That is also the time unsurprisingly when we see a spike in mental health issues including anxiety, depression, self-harm and suicidal ideation. It’s the fear and shame and stigma and not being able to tell somebody you are carrying around this secret."
Griffith continued: "The more that non-LGBT people express the fact that they are supportive of LGBT people in their homes and communities, the more this will reduce anxiety for young people who haven’t come out yet because they will know that when they come out they will be loved and accepted and included.”
The data has been released to coincide with Ireland's 2020 Stand Up Awareness Week, the country's largest anti LGBTQ+ bullying campaign.