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Government survey
shows 3.6 million Brits are gay

Government survey
shows 3.6 million Brits are gay

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As gay and lesbian couples in the U.K. rush to register their civil partnerships, the government has released figures showing that 6% of the British population is gay or lesbian.

As gay and lesbian couples in the United Kingdom rush to register their civil partnerships, the government has released figures showing that 6% of the British population is gay or lesbian. That translates into 3.6 million people, London's Daily Telegraph reported Monday. Meanwhile, there are an estimated 1.5 million to 2 million gay men, lesbians, and bisexuals in the workforce of 30 million people, the newspaper reported. The Department of Trade based both estimates on the findings of various studies during the past 15 years. The new data was lauded by gay rights groups. "This is a significant moment,'' Ben Summerskill, the chief executive of Stonewall, told the newspaper. "For the first time the government has robustly acknowledged the existence of a substantial number of gay people in Britain. This is welcome and long overdue. Historically, people have got bogged down in endless rows about this with some of the more colorful gay activists insisting as many as 20% of the population was gay, while people who were opposed to gay equality, such as Norman Tebbit, claimed it was one in 100." The government estimates that 3.3% of gay men and lesbians over the age of 16 will be in registered civil partnerships, compared with around one third of the straight population who will be married. (Advocate.com)

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