HRC Blog

UCLA's Williams Institute Estimates 9 Million LGBT Individuals Living in America

Today the Williams Institute released new research that estimates the size of the LGBT community in the United States.  The study suggests that there are more than 8 million adults in the US who are lesbian, gay, or bisexual, making up about 3.5% of the adult population.  There are also nearly 700,000 transgender individuals in the US.  In total, the study estimates that approximately 9 million Americans identify as LGBT.

The Institute used information from four recent national, and two state-level population-based surveys of adults.

From The Williams Institute:

Increasing numbers of population-based surveys in the United States and across the world include questions designed to measure sexual orientation and gender identity. Understanding the size of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) population is a critical first step to informing a host of public policy and research topics. Examples include assessing health and economic disparities in the LGBT community, understanding the prevalence of anti-LGBT discrimination, and considering the economic impact of marriage equality or the provision of domestic partnership benefits to same-sex couples. This research brief discusses challenges associated with collecting better information about the LGBT community and reviews findings from eleven recent US and international surveys that ask sexual orientation or gender identity questions. The brief concludes with estimates of the size of the LGBT population in the United States.

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