Report

Incarceration Rates and Traits of Sexual Minorities in the United States

National Inmate Survey, 2011–2012
February 2017

This study presents information on incarcerated sexual minorities, including offense history and sentence, childhood victimizations, mental health, and victimization while incarcerated. It is the first to consider incarcerated sexual minority men and women separately. The study was published in the American Journal of Public Health in February 2017.

Highlights
The rate of incarceration of LGB people is approximately 3 times higher than the already high general U.S. incarceration rate.
Incarcerated sexual minorities are more likely to experience mistreatment, harsh punishment, and sexual victimization than straight inmates.
Sexual minority men and women were significantly more likely to have spent time in disciplinary segregation or solitary confinement.
Data Points
238,000
sexual minorities are incarcerated in the U.S.
6%
of men in prison are gay or bisexual
33.3%
of women in prison are lesbian or bisexual
1,882
per 100,000 LGB people are incarcerated
612
per 100,000 U.S. adults are incarcerated

Please contact our communications office for a full copy of the study.

Incarceration Rates and Traits of Sexual Minorities in the United States