Census & LGBT Demographic Studies

  • UT

    Estimating the Economic Boost of Extending Marriage to Same-Sex Couples in Utah

    Extending marriage to same-sex couples in Utah would generate up to $15.5 million in spending to the state economy. According to 2010 U.S. Census, the most recent data available, 3,909 same-sex couples live in Utah. Of those couples, the Institute estimates that 50 percent (1,955 couples) would choose to marry in the first three years, a pattern that has been observed in Massachusetts and elsewhere. Over 1,200 marriages would occur in the first year alone, and bring up to $10 million in revenue to the state of Utah that year. Wedding-related spending and tourism would generate approximately 268 new jobs in Utah over the first three years.

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  • VA-img

    Estimating the Economic Boost of Extending Marriage to Same-Sex Couples in Virginia

    By M.V. Lee Badgett, Sheila Nezhad, Christy Mallory
    April 2014

    Extending marriage to same-sex couples in Virginia would generate up to $60 million in spending to the state economy. According to 2010 U.S. Census, the most recent data available, 14,244 same-sex couples live in Virginia. Of those couples, the Institute estimates that 50 percent (7,122 couples) would choose to marry in the first three years, a pattern that has been observed in Massachusetts and elsewhere. Nearly 5,000 marriages would occur in the first year alone, and bring up to $38 million in revenue to the state of Virginia that year.

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  • Estimating the Economic Boost of Marriage for Same-Sex Couples in Oregon

    By Erin G. Fitzgerald, Christy Mallory, M.V. Lee Badgett
    April 2014

    Extending marriage to same-sex couples in Oregon would generate nearly $50 million in spending to the state economy. According to 2010 U.S. Census, the most recent data available, 11,773 same-sex couples live in Oregon. Of those couples, the report estimates that 50 percent (5,887 couples) would choose to marry in the first three years, a pattern that has been observed in Massachusetts and elsewhere. Nearly 4,000 marriages would occur in the first year alone, and bring over $30 million in revenue to the state of Oregon that year.

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  • Estimating the Economic Boost of Marriage for Same-Sex Couples in Colorado

    By Lee Badgett, Christy Mallory
    April 2014

    Extending marriage to same-sex couples in Colorado would generate $50 million in spending to the state and local economy. According to the 2010 U.S. Census, 12,424 same-sex couples live in Colorado. Of those couples, the Institute estimates that 50% (6,212 couples) would choose to marry in the first three years, a pattern that has been observed in Massachusetts and elsewhere. Of the couples that will marry, 64% of those marriages will occur during the first year, 21% in the second year and 15% in the third years.

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  • Same-sex Couples in Virginia: A demographic summary

    By Gary J. Gates
    April 2014

    Based on the 2010 Census, there are 14,243 same-sex couples living in Virginia. The majority of same-sex couples are female (51%). Nearly one fifth of individuals in same-sex couples in Virginia are members of racial or ethnic minorities. Latinos and Latinas comprise 11% of individuals in same-sex couples and 6% of those in different-sex married couples. The portion of African-Americans is 4% among those in same-sex couples and 12% among those in different-sex married couples. Asians, Native Hawaiians, and Pacific Islanders comprise 3% of individuals in same-sex couples and 7% of those in different-sex married couples.

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  • Race/Ethnicity, Gender and Socioeconomic Wellbeing of Individuals in Same-sex Couples

    By Angeliki Kastanis, Bianca Wilson
    February 2014

    Similar patterns of racial disparities in income and employment exist among individuals in same-sex and different-sex couples. The report also found that racial/ethnic minority individuals in same-sex couples tend to live in areas where there are higher proportions of individuals of their own race or ethnicity. Among same-sex couples, African-American, Latino, American-Indian and Alaskan Native respondents have lower incomes, lower college completion rates and higher unemployment rates than White, Asian and Pacific Islander respondents.

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  • LGBT African-American Individuals and African-American Same-Sex Couples

    By Angeliki Kastanis, Gary J. Gates
    October 2013

    An estimated 1,018,700 or 3.7 percent of African-American adults consider themselves lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender (LGBT) and 34 percent of African-American same-sex couples are raising children. Currently, the estimated 84,000 African-American individuals in same-sex couples tend to live in areas where there are higher proportions of African-Americans. A quarter of African-American same-sex couples live in Georgia, New York, North Carolina, and Maryland. Overall, LGBT African-Americans have higher unemployment rates when compared to their non-LGBT counterparts.

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  • LGBT Latino/a Individuals and Latino/a Same-Sex Couples

    By Angeliki Kastanis, Gary J. Gates
    October 2013

    An estimated 1.4 million or 4.3 percent of Latino/a adults consider themselves LGBT and 29 percent of Latino/a same-sex couples are raising children. The estimated 146,100 Latino/a individuals in same-sex couples tend to live in areas where there are higher proportions of Latinos/as. A third of Latino/a same-sex couples live in New Mexico, California, and Texas. Nationally, Latino/a individuals in same-sex couples are faring better than Latinos/as in different-sex couples. Twenty-six percent of all Latinos/as in same-sex couples have completed a college degree or more, compared to 14 percent of Latinos/as in different-sex couples.

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  • LGBT Asian and Pacific Islander Individuals and Same-Sex Couples

    By Angeliki Kastanis, Gary J. Gates
    September 2013

    An estimated 325,000 or 2.8% of all Asian and Pacific Islander (API) adults in the United States identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender (LGBT). Nationally, API LGBT individuals have lower rates of employment and academic achievement than their non-LGBT counterparts. Nearly 33,000 API LGBT individuals are in same-sex couples, a third of which live in California, Hawaii and New York. Further analysis reveals vulnerable LGBT subgroups including Pacific Islanders and Native Hawaiians, female same-sex couples, and couples where both partners are API.

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  • Infographic: HAWAI’I

    October 2013

    A new infographic by the Williams Institute shows there are more than 53,900 LGBT individuals in Hawai’i and approximately 3,200 same-sex couples in the state. Extending marriage rights to same-sex couples in Hawai’i could affect nearly 54,000 LGBT individuals and more than 3,000 couples living in the state. It would also bring up to $217 million to the state economy.

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  • New Patterns of Poverty in the Lesbian, Gay, and Bisexual Community

    By M.V. Lee Badgett, Laura E. Durso, Alyssa Schneebaum
    June 2013

    As poverty rates for nearly all populations increased during the recession, lesbian, gay, and bisexual (LGB) Americans remained more likely to be poor than heterosexual people. Gender, race, education and geography all influence poverty rates among LGB populations, and children of same-sex couples are particularly vulnerable to poverty. The study updates and extends a similar, first-of-its kind Williams Institute report released in 2009 that was based on data from the first half of the last decade

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  • INFOGRAPHIC: % of Same-sex Couples Raising Children in Top Metro Areas (MSAs)

    May 2013

    Same-sex couples raising children live in areas all across the country. Many of these areas, including Salt Lake City, Memphis and San Antonio, are located in states that currently have a constitutional amendment banning marriage for same-sex couples. Mississippi has the highest percentage of same-sex couples raising children at 26 percent. Top metro areas are comprised of a large population center and adjacent communities that are economically integrated with that center.

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  • Estimating the Economic Boost of Marriage Equality in Delaware

    By Angeliki Kastanis and M.V. Lee Badgett
    May 2013

    Extending marriage rights to same-sex couples in Delaware would bring an estimated $7 million to the state and local economy. According to the 2010 U.S. Census, 2,646 same-sex couples live in Delaware. Of those couples, 50 percent, or approximately 767 marriage licenses, would be issued within the first three years after the passage of marriage equality, a pattern that has been observed in Massachusetts and elsewhere. The report also takes into account the Delaware couples that may have married in other states.

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  • Demographics and LGBT Health

    By Gary J. Gates
    March 2013

    New article published in the Journal of Health and Social Behavior, examines recent studies documenting health disadvantages for same-sex couples compared with different-sex married couples that cannot be fully explained by differences in socioeconomic status. The 2012 U.S. presidential election saw, for the first time, the election of a major party candidate who publicly supported same-sex couples’ right to marry. Exit polling from that election found that 49 percent of voters supported legal marriage for same-sex couples in their states, compared with 46 percent who opposed.

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  • LGBT Adult Immigrants in the United States

    By Gary J. Gates
    March 2013

    There are approximately 267,000 LGBT-identified individuals among the adult undocumented immigrant population and an estimated 637,000 LGBT-identified individuals among the adult documented immigrant population. The report finds that approximately 71 percent of undocumented LGBT adults are Hispanic and 15 percent of undocumented LGBT adults are Asian or Pacific Islander. Relative to all undocumented immigrants, LGBT undocumented immigrants are more likely to be male and are younger.

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  • Same Sex and Different Sex Couples in the American Community Survey: 2005-2011

    By Gary J. Gates
    February 2013

    This research brief summarizes the demographic characteristics of same-sex couples from 2005 through 2011 using the US Census Bureau’s American Community Survey (ACS) and compares them to different-sex couples. The majority of same-sex couples in the US are female (a change from 2005 when the majority were male), about one in five same-sex couples are raising children under age 18, and nearly one in ten men in same-sex couples.

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  • LGBT Parenting in the United States

    By Gates J. Gates
    February 2013

    As many as six million American children and adults have an LGBT parent. Same-sex couple parents and their children are more likely to be racial and ethnic minorities. An estimated 39 percent of individuals in same-sex couples with children under age 18 at home are non-white, as are half of their children. States with the highest proportions of same-sex couples raising biological, adopted or step-children include Mississippi (26%), Wyoming (25%), Alaska (23%), Idaho (22%), and Montana (22%).

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  • Gallup Special Report: New Estimates of the LGBT Population in the United States

    By Gary J. Gates, Frank Newport
    February 2013

    The percentage of adults in the United States who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender (LGBT) ranges from 1.7% in North Dakota to 5.1% in Hawaii and 10% in the District of Columbia. While LGBT communities are clearly present in every state in the union, their visibility is generally higher in states with greater levels of social acceptance and LGBT supportive legal climates.

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  • Gender-Related Measures Overview

    The GenIUSS Group
    February 2013

    The GenIUSS group (Gender Identity in U.S. Surveillance), convened by the Williams Institute, is a collaboration of scientists, scholars, and transgender leaders dedicated to increasing knowledge about gender-related measurement and promoting the inclusion of these measures on population-based surveys, with particular consideration for publicly-funded data collection efforts.

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  • LGBT Vote 2012

    By Gary J. Gates
    November 2012

    Exit polls from the 2012 presidential election suggest that 5% of the electorate identified as lesbian, gay, or bisexual. These LGB voters overwhelmingly supported President Obama for re-election. Exit polls suggest that the President garnered 76% of the LGB vote compared to 22% support for Gov. Mitt Romney. The strong LGBT support for President Obama was likely a key factor in his ability to win the national popular vote and the very close election in Florida. This research brief considers the impact of the LGBT vote on the Electoral College and explores the extent to which LGBT identity impacts the LGBT vote.

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