LGBT Latin@s Largest Minority, Fastest Growing, New Reports Show

Published: November 8, 2013

 There are an estimated 1.4 million adult LGBT Latin@s in the U.S., according to a recently released report from a Southern California-based think tank. With 4.3 percent of Latin@ adults identifying as LGBT, that number means they are the largest ethnic or racial minority, including LGBT African Americans and LGBT Asian/Pacific Islanders. The numbers for African Americans and Asian/Pacific Islanders are 1 million (or 3.7 percent) and 324,600 (or 2.8 percent), respectively.

 
“There’s a common stereotype in LGBT community that the number who identify as racial or ethnic minorities is somehow lower than in the white community,” said Gary J. Gates, a co-author of the studies.
 
According to Gates, “In looking at the details of the report, these minorities in the LGBT community, like in the U.S., are younger. What we are seeing is that LGBT’s are coming out at a much earlier age, and that’s true in racial and ethnic minorities,” which explains “the higher levels of LGBT identification.” 
 
“The rate of identification as LGBT is twice as high among under 30 than among 30 or older,” said Gates.
 
Gates is a distinguished scholar at the Williams Institute, UCLA School of Law. The Williams Institute published all three reports in the past two months. The studies were based on a Gallup Daily tracking survey, 2008-2010 American Community Survey, and adjustments to Census 2010 same-sex couple data.
 
In all, nearly 60 percent of LGBT Latin@ adults in the U.S. live in California, Florida, New York, and Texas, according to the Williams Institute report. The number of LGBT Latin@ individuals in same-sex relationships is 146,000, with 29 percent of the Latin@ same-sex couples raising children. These couples tend to live in areas with higher proportions of Latin@s in the general population. For example, a third of Latin@ same-sex couples live in New Mexico, California and Texas. The top three states for percent of LGBT Latin@ individuals are Texas, Nevada and California.
 
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