Nearly 1 million same-sex couple households in 2019, U.S. Census Bureau says

Rainbow flags fly at Rockefeller Center in midtown Manhattan in support of the LGBT community, prior to the 51st anniversary of the Stonewall Uprising, in New York City, June 26, 2020. (REUTERS/Mike Segar)

The number of same-sex married and unmarried couple households in the United States reached nearly 1 million in 2019, according to a U.S. Census Bureau survey that broke out the statistic for the first time.

Married couples made up most (58%) of the 980,000 same-sex couple households, while 42% were identified as unmarried partner households, according to the Census Bureau’s American Community Survey, released on Thursday.

There were nearly 123 million households in the United States last year.

The 2019 survey included revised questions designed to more accurately characterize and count same-sex couple households, the Census Bureau said, allowing it to break out same-sex household statistics for the first time.

The survey found that female-couple households slightly outnumbered male-couple households among both married and unmarried people.

The number of same-sex couples nationwide is likely greater than the 980,000 tracked by the survey, which includes only those living in the same household.

The District of Columbia had the highest percentage of same-sex couple households at 2.4%, followed by Delaware (1.3%) and Oregon at Massachusetts (1.2%).

The rate of labor participation for same-sex married people aged 16-64 was significantly higher (84.6%) than for opposite-sex married individuals (80.4%).

Women married to a same-sex partner were much more likely to be employed than women married to a member of the opposite sex, while married men in same-sex household were less likely to be working than their peers in opposite-sex relationships.

The number of married same-sex households in the United States has increased to 568,110 from 334,829 since 2014, the year before the Supreme Court legalized same-sex marriage nationwide, according to Census Bureau data.

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