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Gay Parents Find the South More Welcoming

Gay Parents Find the South More Welcoming

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An analysis of U.S. Census data shows that childrearing is more common among same-sex couples in the South than in any other region of the country, and those parents defy the mainstream stereotype of gay people as affluent, white, and living in cities.

The New York Times
reports on the pattern identified by demographer Gary Gates of the University of California, evidenced by the fact that Jacksonville, Fla., is home to one of the biggest populations of gay parents in the country. Other hot spots for child-rearing compared to the West Coast, New York, and New England include Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, and Texas.

According to the Times, "Black or Latino gay couples are twice as likely as whites to be raising children, according to Mr. Gates, who used data from a Census Bureau sampling known as the American Community Survey. They are also more likely than their white counterparts to be struggling economically."

Experts theorized that the pattern could be related to the number of gay people who have children in heterosexual relationships before coming out, and the expanding number of minority women of childbearing age.

The Times reports that the Census Bureau estimated there were 581,000 same-sex couples in the U.S. in 2009. Single gay people are not counted.

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