More American adults are now identifying as lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender (LGBT) compared to just three years ago.
According to Gallup’s latest update on LGBT identification, 5.6% of American adults identified as LGBT in 2020. This is an increase from 4.5% in 2017, the last time this study was conducted. In 2012, 3.5% of Americans identified as LGBT.
The latest results are based on more than 15,000 interviews conducted throughout 2020 with Americans aged 18 and older. Interestingly, 7.6% of those surveyed did not answer the question about their sexual orientation at all.
Of those who identified as LGBT in 2020, the majority (54.6%) are bisexual, while 24.5% say they are gay. They are followed by those who identify as lesbian (17.3%) and 11.3% as transgender. Around 3.3% identify with other terms such as queer or same-gender-loving.
This means that across the American population, 3.1% of adults identify as bisexual, 1.4% as gay, 0.7% as lesbian and 0.6% as transgender.
Women are more likely than men to identify as LGBT (6.4% vs. 4.9%) and bisexual (4.3% vs 1.8%).
“At a time when Americans are increasingly supportive of equal rights for gay, lesbian and transgender people, a growing percentage of Americans identify themselves as LGBT. With younger generations far more likely than older generations to consider themselves LGBT, that growth should continue,” said Gallup.
The company speculated that the increase does not necessarily mean that more people are being born LGBT but rather that younger generations of LGBT people are simply more willing to be open and accepting about their sexuality or gender identity.
“To the extent it reflects older Americans not wanting to acknowledge an LGBT orientation, the Gallup estimates may underestimate the actual population prevalence of it,” added Gallup.