Landmark Report on Supporting and Affirming LGBTQI+ Youth Includes Expertise of MSU Psychologist

April 4, 2023 - Shelly DeJong

On Transgender Day of Visibility, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) released a report with the latest scientific research on supporting the mental health of LGBTQI+ youth. The report was developed by a team of professional experts, including Dr. Robin Lin Miller, an ecological-community psychologist at MSU, who provided evidence reviews on conversion therapy. 

A picture of the front cover of the report A corresponding Fact Sheet released by the White House said that this landmark report provides “new resources to parents, teachers, and mental health providers so they can use evidence-based practices to affirm and support transgender and LGBTQI+ youth and their families.”  

The report: 

  • Provides an updated evidence-based roadmap for supporting and affirming LGBTQI+ youth. 
  • Comprehensively reviews key scientific studies, guidelines from major medical and other professional associations, and implications for clinical care. 
  • Offers guidance and highlights resources for health care providers, educators, families, community leaders, and others — to reduce behavioral health inequities facing LGBTQI+ youth and their families. 
  • Explores policy levers and future research areas that can improve the behavioral health ofLGBTQI+ youth. 

“Reports such as this are important because they lay to rest the question of whether ‘conversion therapy’ is an effective, helpful, or appropriate approach to treating young people,” said Dr. Miller. “The evidence is clear it is not appropriate, effective, or helpful. Reports like this can help parents, teachers, and other care providers make better, evidence-informed decisions to support youth’s well-being.”  

Dr. Miller is a member of the MSU Sexual and Gender Minority Health Consortium, the Center for Gender in Global Context, and the Alliance for African Partnerships. Her research focuses on effective community-based HIV prevention services and access to HIV care. She has 32 years of experience evaluating HIV prevention and care programs in community-based and clinical environments.  

In 2022, SAMHSA explored the themes of this report at several educational events, including presentations at the Midwest LGBTQ+ Health Symposium and GLMA Annual Conference on LGBTQ Health, as well as a webinar for clinicians, hosted by the Center of Excellence on LGBTQ+ Behavioral Health Equity, and a webinar for families and communities, hosted by the National Family Support Technical Assistance Center. 

Information from the report was also highlighted during SAMHSA’s Prevention Day earlier this year. SAMHSA has also said that they will continue to pursue additional opportunities to educate the public on findings from the report. Learn more at