10 Facts About America's Gays
BY Advocate.com Editors
April 08 2011 3:15 PM ET
As the Williams Institute celebrates a decade of gathering data to inform
the nation about the LGBT population, the organization shares 10 facts
that were uncovered about gay people, from our diversity to our
impact on the federal deficit:
1. 9 million LGBT people live in the U.S., 3.8 % of the adult population.
2. LGBT people are racially, ethnically, and geographically diverse: 1 in 4 are people of color and same-sex couples have identified themselves on the Census in 99% of U.S. counties.
3. A substantial percentage of LGBT people are raising children: 1 in 5 same-sex couples and 6% of children in foster care are being raised by LGB people.
4. LGB people are serving in the Armed Forces: 71,000 are currently serving, and there are over 1 million LGB veterans in the U.S.
5. 70,000 same-sex couples have gotten married in the U.S.; another 90,000 have entered into civil unions and domestic partnerships.
6. The annual divorce rate for same-sex couples and different-sex married couples is similar — about 2%.
7. LGBT people are not more affluent. Gay men earn 10% to 23% less, on average, than heterosexual men. Children of same-sex couples are twice as likely to live in poverty.
8. Rates of hate crimes and employment discrimination against LGBT people are similar to or higher than for other protected groups. Until the Williams Institute, no one analyzed this data on a per capita basis, taking into account the smaller size of the LGBT population.
9. "Don't ask, don't tell" has cost taxpayers over $500 million since it started being enforced in 1994.
10. If all 50 states and the federal government recognized marriage for same-sex couples, the federal budget would benefit by over $1 billion each year.