Census & LGBT Demographic Studies

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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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    Gallup Special Report: The LGBT Vote in the 2012 Presidential Election

    By Gary J. Gates, Frank Newport
    October 2012

    A Gallup Report finds that 71% of LGBT Americans who are registered voters support President Obama for reelection, while 22% support Governor Mitt Romney. From June to September, non-LGBT registered voters preferred Romney to Obama by one percentage point, 47% to 46%. However, when LGBT voters are added to electorate, Obama moves slightly ahead of Romney (47% to 45%). These findings suggest that the highly Democratic vote of the LGBT population could be enough to swing a very close election toward Obama.

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    Gallup Special Report: The U.S. Adult LGBT Population

    By Gary J. Gates, Frank Newport
    October 2012

    A Gallup report finds that 3.4% of U.S. adults identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender (LGBT), with the highest incidence among those who are non-white, younger, and less educated. The findings are based on the largest representative sample of LGBT men and women ever collected. This is the first of several reports that will analyze data collected as part of Gallup’s daily tracking survey where respondents are asked if they personally identify as gay, lesbian, bisexual, or transgender.

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    LGBT Identity: A Demographer’s Perspective

    By Gary J. Gates
    June 2012

    In a recent study, Gates estimated that the self-identified lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) community makes up 3.8 percent of the American population. The estimate was far lower than many scholars and activists had contended, and it included a relatively high proportion of persons self-identifying as bisexuals. This article responds to two of the central criticisms that arose in the controversy that followed.

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    Same-sex Couples in Census 2010: Race and Ethnicity

    By Gary J. Gates
    April 2012

    Newly released Census 2010 data highlight unique aspects of racial and ethnic diversity within same-sex couples. They are more likely than their different-sex counterparts to be interracial or interethnic and couples that include a racial or ethnic minority are more likely to be raising children. Fully a third of same-sex couples that include an Hispanic partner are raising children.

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    Family Formation and Raising Children Among Same-sex Couples

    By Gary Gates
    January 2012

    Proportionally fewer same-sex couples are raising children today than in 2006, and their families reflect greater racial/ethnic and socioeconomic diversity than often represented in the media and academic research, according to new analyses by Williams Distinguished Scholar Dr. Gary Gates, published by the National Council of Family Relations.

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    Same-sex Couples and Immigration in the United States

    Gary J. Gates and Craig Konnoth
    November 2011

    There are an estimated 28,500 binational same-sex couples and nearly 11,500 same-sex couples in which neither partner is a U.S. citizen. None of these 40,000 couples are eligible to use the immigration preferences available to different-sex spouses. These couples are raising almost 25,000 children.

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    United States – Census Snapshot 2010

    September 2011

    A new Williams Institute analysis of Census 2010 data shows that nearly 132,000 (20%) of the nearly 650,000 same-sex couples in the U.S. identified as spouses. Data further showed that 31% of couples who identified as spouses and 14% of unmarried partners are raising children. The analyses in the new national report use new estimates of same-sex couples released by the Census Bureau that revise tabulations released earlier this summer.

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    Testimony on the Demographic Characteristics of Gay, Lesbian and Bisexual Latinos and Latinos in Same-Sex Couples

    By Craig J. Konnoth
    July 2011

    Many of the issues that Latino Lesbian Gay Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) individuals face are insufficiently understood. This testimony explains that existing demographic data about Latino LGB individuals show that these individuals, who constitute the greatest number of same-sex partners of color in the United States, differ significantly from their non-Latino LGB counterparts, as well as from straight Latino individuals in numerous ways.

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    New Information on Impending Release of Census Data on Same-Sex Couples

    Press Release
    May 2011

    The Williams Institute will continue its leading role in disseminating US Census data on same-sex couples with the impending release of the 2010 Census data.

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    How Many People are Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender?

    By Gary J. Gates
    April 2011

    Drawing on information from four recent national and two state-level population-based surveys, the analyses suggest that there are more than 8 million adults in the US who are lesbian, gay, or bisexual, comprising 3.5% of the adult population.

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    Statewide Estimation of Racial/Ethnic Populations of Men Who Have Sex with Men in the U.S.

    January 2011

    Men who have sex with men (MSM) bear the greatest burden of human immunodeficiency virus HIV/AIDS in every state in the U.S., but their populations are poorly defined. Authors of the study estimated and compared populations of MSM in 2007 by region, state, and race/ethnicity.

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

    October 2010

    Williams Institute analyses of newly release 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.

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