This page contains state-specific research for the state of California:
- Jody Herman, Bianca D.M. Wilson, Tara BeckerOctober 2017A new report provides the first look at transgender data from the California Health Interview Survey (CHIS), the nation’s largest state survey. The report reveals demographic characteristics of transgender adults in the state, such as population size, racial makeup and marital status, as well as disparities in their health status.
- Amira Hasenbush, Bianca D.M. Wilson, Ayako Miyashita, Madeline SharpOctober 2017The vast majority of all HIV-specific criminal incidents in California involve people engaged in sex work or those suspected of engaging in sex work. A new report finds that women—and Black women, in particular—are the most disproportionately impacted by California's sex work laws, both as they apply to people living with HIV and people not living with HIV.
- Soon Kyu Choi, Bianca D.M. WilsonOctober 2017LGBTQ youth in California experience less connection to their school, poorer academic outcomes and more frequent victimization than their non-LGBTQ peers. A new report by the Williams Institute explored disparities in school experiences, school performance and well-being of LGBTQ and non-LGBTQ youth in California, as well as disparities between LGBTQ youth in rural and urban areas in the state.
- Senator Scott Wiener (D-San Francisco) and Assemblymember Todd Gloria (D-San Diego) introduced Senate Bill 239, a bill to modernize laws that criminalize people living with HIV. Assemblymember David Chiu is also a co-author of the bill. It would amend California’s HIV criminalization laws, enacted in the 1980s and 1990s at a time of fear and ignorance about HIV and its transmission, to make them up to date with the current understanding of HIV prevention, treatment, and transmission.
- Bianca D.M. Wilson, Khush Cooper, Angel Kastanis, and Soon Kyu Choi, November 2016This report describes the methodology used in a 2014 Williams Institute study on sexual and gender minority youth in the Los Angeles County foster care system . The 2014 study surveyed youth in foster care about their sexual orientation, gender identity and gender expression, other demographic characteristics, and experiences in foster care. In this methods report about the 2014 study, researchers describe the study design and process, share their survey instrument and recommended questions, and review lessons learned from their experience.
- Amira Hasenbush, Bianca D.M. Wilson, October 2016In the new report HIV Criminalization Against Immigrants in California, Williams Institute Scholars Amira Hasenbush and Bianca D.M. Wilson, use California Criminal Offender Record Information (CORI) data to explore how HIV criminal laws in California are enforced against foreign born populations. Key Findings include: 15 percent of people in California who have come into contact with the criminal justice system for HIV crimes are foreign born and 83 percent of those foreign born were from Mexico, Central or South America, or the Caribbean.
- By Jordan Blair Woods, Brad Sears, Christy MallorySeptember 2016“Gay panic” and “transgender panic” defenses have been asserted by defendants in criminal trials throughout the U.S. since the 1960s. In these cases, defendants have argued that their violent behavior was a rational response to discovering that the victim was LGBT. The defenses are rooted in irrational fears based on homophobia and transphobia, and send the message that violence against LGBT people is understandable and acceptable. When successful, these defenses have resulted in murder charges being reduced to manslaughter or another lesser offense. To date, only one state, California, has banned defendants from asserting gay or transgender panic defense by statute. In this brief, Williams Institute scholars present model language, based on the language adopted in California, that other states may use to eliminate use of the defenses through legislation. The model legislation offers language to prohibit defendants from using gay and trans panic defenses under each of the major defenses theories of provocation, insanity/diminished capacity, and self-defense. In addition, the brief provides an overview of the ways in which the defenses have been asserted in trials throughout the last several decades, and evaluates potential constitutional challenges to state legislation eliminating use of the defenses.
- By Andrew R. Flores, Jody L. Herman, Gary J. Gates, and Taylor N. T. BrownJune 2016Utilizing data from the 2014 Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS), which includes representative state-level surveys, Williams Institute scholars provide up-to-date estimates of the percentage and number of adults who identify as transgender in the United States. Approximately 0.6% of adults in the United States, or 1.4 million individuals, identify as transgender. The study also provides the first ever state-level estimates of the number and percentage of adults who identify as transgender for all 50 states and the District of Columbia. Differences exist in the percentage of adults who identify as transgender among the states, ranging from 0.3% in North Dakota to 0.8% in Hawaii. Differences by age also exist, with younger adults more likely to identify as transgender than older adults. An estimated 0.7% of adults ages 18 to 24, 0.6% of adults ages 25 to 64, and 0.5% of adults ages 65 and older identify as transgender.
- By Angeliki KastanisJanuary 2016While LGBT people in California appear to be doing better than LGBT people nationwide, there is as much disparity within the state as throughout the rest of the United States. This report and data interactive explores disparities in the socioeconomic well-being of LGBT people throughout California, using data from the 2010 U.S. Census and the 2012-2014 Gallup Daily Tracking Survey. These regional patterns mirror those for non-LGBT people, which suggests that broader demographic factors also play an important role in LGBT vulnerability.
- By Jordan Blair WoodsSeptember 2014On September 27, 2014, California Governor Jerry Brown signed into law AB 2501, legislation that prohibits the use of “gay panic” and “transgender panic” defenses to reduce murder charges to manslaughter in criminal trials. The passage of this bill makes California the first state in the country to prohibit the use of gay and transgender panic defenses through legislation. AB 2501 ensures that defendants cannot use gay and transgender panic defenses in an attempt to lower a charge from murder to manslaughter or to escape conviction in California.
- By Bianca D.M. Wilson, Khush Cooper, Angel Kastanis, Sheila NezhadAugust 2014LGBTQ foster youth are twice as likely to report poor treatment and more likely to live in group homes and to have more foster care placements. Approximately 1 in 5, or 1,400 foster youth in Los Angeles County, home to the nation’s largest population of foster youth, identify as LGBTQ. The finding is twice the estimated percentage of youth not in foster care who are LGBTQ. Over 86% of foster youth in Los Angeles are Latino, Black, or API.
- By Frank H. Galvan and Mohsen BazarganApril 2012A new report, funded by the Williams Institute, reveals high levels of reported harassment and assault of Latina transgender women by law enforcement agencies and highlights steps that police departments should take to improve relations with the transgender community. The report is based on interviews with 220 Latina transgender women from the Los Angeles area.
- By Brad Sears, Christian Cooper, Fariba S. Younai, Tom DonohoeDecember 2011This study used trained testers to measure the level of HIV discrimination by dentists in Los Angeles County. The findings suggest the need for more targeted education efforts to ensure equal access to dental services for all PLWHA.
- MemorandumSeptember 2009This report documents public sector employment discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity in California. The report is part of a 15 chapter study that documents a widespread and persistent pattern of unconstitutional discrimination by state governments against LGBT people.
The Effect of California’s Budget Cuts on Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender People and Their ChildrenJuly 2009California faces a $26.3 million budget shortfall for the approaching fiscal year. In an effort to balance the budget, cuts are likely to some of California’s most vital services and programs including Medi-Cal, the State’s healthcare option for low-income children, families, elderly, and disabled. This research note explores the potential consequence of the severe downsizing or elimination of some of California’s public benefits programs on the often overlooked low-income lesbian, gay, and bisexual population.
- By Gary J. Gates, Christopher RamosOctober 2008This report provides demographic and economic information for the almost 861,000 LGB individuals and 109,000 same-sex couples living in California. We use the 2005/2006 American Community Survey (ACS), conducted by the U.S. Census Bureau, to compare characteristics of same-sex couples to their different-sex married counterparts.
- By Gary J. Gates, Christopher RamosOctober 2008This report provides a general overview of Asian and Pacific Islanders (API) in same-sex couples as well as the broader API lesbian, gay, and bisexual (LGB) population in California.
- By Gary J. Gates, Christopher RamosOctober 2008This study provides demographic and economic information for the more than 200,000 LGB Latino/a individuals and 52,410 Latinos/as in same-sex couples living in California. The study shows that nearly half of Latinas and 44% of Latinos in same-sex couples in California are raising nearly 25,000 children.
- By Gary J. Gates, Christopher RamosOctober 2008This report provides a general overview of Black individuals in same-sex couples as well as the broader Black lesbian, gay, and bisexual (LGB) population in California.
- October 2008We surveyed California counties in order estimate the number of same-sex couples who have married in the state in the first three months since these marriages were made legal in June, 2008.