- Rise in LGBT identification mostly among millennials
- LGBT identification is lower among older generations
- 5.1% of women identify as LGBT, compared with 3.9% of men
WASHINGTON, D.C. -- The value of the Gallup data is the use of a constant question wording over time and the largest yearly sample sizes of any effort to measure sexual and gender orientation in the U.S. (the Census does not regularly include such questions in its population updates). Therefore, the upward trajectory in these estimates of the LGBT adult population provides an important social indicator relating to this key aspect of contemporary American society.
The percentage of American adults identifying as lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender (LGBT) increased to 4.5% in 2017, up from 4.1% in 2016 and 3.5% in 2012 when Gallup began tracking the measure. The latest estimate is based on over 340,000 interviews conducted as part of Gallup's daily tracking in 2017.
Gallup's LGBT estimates are based on those respondents who say "yes" when asked, "Do you, personally, identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender?" Extrapolation to the latest census estimate of adults 18 and older in the U.S. suggests that more than 11 million adults identify as LGBT in the country today.
The expansion in the number of Americans who identify as LGBT is driven primarily by the cohort of millennials, defined as those born between 1980 and 1999. The percentage of millennials who identify as LGBT expanded from 7.3% to 8.1% from 2016 to 2017, and is up from 5.8% in 2012. Read more via Gallup