Census Hub




Census Bureau Has Begun Counting Married Same-Sex Couples as 'Families'

As we reported back in May, the Census Bureau has officially amended its definition of "families" to include married, same-sex couples.

FamilyThe Charlotte Observer reports:

In prior years, the U.S. Census Bureau counted such couples as “unmarried partners,” even if they were legally married. But now, starting with the new annual American Community Survey, they are in among the family totals. [...]

Same-sex couples who live together but are not married are still counted as “unmarried partners,” the same designation for unmarried opposite-sex couples. The Census Bureau has counted same-sex couples since 1990.

The Washington Post added back in May:

Because of the large disparity between the number of gay and straight married households, combining the two is not expected to have a significant effect on the statistics that scholars and planners use to analyze how families are changing. Its significance is largely symbolic of the growing acceptance of gays in American society.


U.S. Census to Finally Start Counting Gay Married Couples as Families

The U.S. Census Bureau will start categorizing gay married couples as families, the Washington Post reports:

FamilyThe 2013 American Community Survey results, which will be reported in September, will mark the first time the census integrates an estimated 180,000 same-sex married couples with statistics concerning the nation’s 56 million families. Until now, they had been categorized as unmarried partners, even when couples reported themselves as spouses.

Because of the large disparity between the number of gay and straight married households, combining the two is not expected to have a significant effect on the statistics that scholars and planners use to analyze how families are changing. Its significance is largely symbolic of the growing acceptance of gays in American society.


Study: LGBT People More Likely to Be Poor Than Heterosexuals

The conventional wisdom that gays are affluent is about to be bucked by a new study, NBC News reports:

HouseOn Monday, the Williams Institute will release a detailed study about lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people and their real economic status. Drawing on recent data from four different sources, the report finds a sexual orientation “poverty gap”: LGBT Americans are more likely to be poor than heterosexuals, with African-Americans and women particularly vulnerable.

Says M.V. Lee Badgett, professor of economics and research director for The Williams Institute:

The findings also suggest that there are other kinds of things to prevent poverty that need to be addressed. For instance, we don’t have any protection against discrimination against LGBT people at the federal level. Only 21 states outlaw discrimination for sexual orientation and 16 states for gender identity. People who lose jobs because of discrimination are very likely to run into problems with poverty. If they don’t have incomes, they will be a whole lot poorer. So, nondiscrimination laws are very important.

Also, marriage is designed to give people a framework for living their economic lives together as well as their family lives, and when people in same-sex couples don’t have access to that framework, then they are automatically deprived of certain kinds of economic supports. Not having the right to marry makes people more economically vulnerable as well.

Read the full interview with Badgett here.


States with Highest Percentages of Gay Couples Raising Children Have Bans on Same-Sex Marriage: Infographic

Ssc

Some interesting statistics from The Williams Institute at the UCLA School of Law.

The L.A. Times reports on their findings:

But the reality for gay parents can be very different, said Gary J. Gates, the researcher behind the new estimates from the Williams Institute at the UCLA School of Law.

For instance, "a big chunk of them are people who had children young, with opposite-sex partners, before they came out," Gates said. After coming out, they raised those children with a partner of the same sex, he explained.

That may be one reason that in some more conservative places not known for celebrating gays and lesbians, a striking percentage of same-sex couples are rearing children, Gates said. Among states, Mississippi has the highest percentage of gay or lesbian couples raising children — 26% — his analysis of census data found.

Though Salt Lake City has a high percentage of gay couples raising children, the actual number is still much smaller than in coastal hubs such as New York or Los Angeles, the data show. Besides the Utah capital, other large urban areas where gay couples are more likely to have children include Virginia Beach, Va., Detroit and Memphis, Tenn. — all places where more than a fifth of couples of the same sex are bringing up kids.


The County Where Gay People Don't Exist: VIDEO

Franklin

Franklin County, Mississippi is ranked as one of the least hospitable county for gay couples because none were counted in the U.S. Census, so CNN's John Sutter went there to find out if that was the case:

2_franklinI drove to this place of rolling hills and misty valleys with a few questions on my mind: Can there really be such a thing as an all-straight county? If so, what is it like to be someone who never has met a gay person? Do you just watch "Glee" and figure it out?

If there are gay people in Franklin County, what keeps them hidden?

I spent a few days searching for answers before I realized I was making the wrong assumptions: It's not that gay people here (or anywhere really) want to be in the closet, necessarily. It's the rest of the world that pushes them in and shuts the door.

Watch, AFTER THE JUMP...

Continue reading "The County Where Gay People Don't Exist: VIDEO" »


Gallup Breaks Down Percentage of LGBT People by State in Largest Study of its Kind: POLL

Gallup is out with new poll results today based on responses to the question, "Do you, personally, identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender?" The question was asked in tracking interviews during the second half of 2012 and is the largest single study of the LGBT population distribution on record.

GallupThe District of Columbia was found to have the largest percentage of LGBT-identifying residents by far with 10%, and North Dakota the least, with 1.7%.

They note:

As was outlined in the first report of these data in October, measuring sexual orientation and gender identity can be challenging because these concepts involve complex social and cultural patterns. There are a number of ways to measure lesbian, gay, and bisexual orientation, and transgender status. Gallup chose a broad measure of personal identification as LGBT because this grouping of four statuses is commonly used in current American discourse, and as a result has important cultural and political significance. One limitation of this approach is that it is not possible to separately consider differences among lesbians, gay men, bisexuals, or transgender individuals. A second limitation is that this approach measures broad self-identity, and does not measure sexual or other behavior, either past or present.

Here are the results:

Gallup


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