New Census Bureau Data Shows Growth in Same-Sex Couples Outpacing Population

October 2010

Williams Institute analyses of newly released data from the 2009 American Community Survey show that the estimated number of same-sex couples who identified themselves as either spouses or unmarried partners increased at three times the rate of population growth from 2008 to 2009. The estimated number of same-sex couples in the US was 564,743 in 2008 and grew to 581,300 in 2009, marking a nearly 3% increase. The US population only increased by approximately 1% between 2008 and 2009. Other findings from the newly released data show evidence of a disproportionate effect of the economic downturn on same-sex couples, particularly male couples, relative to their different-sex married counterparts.

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