Bisexuals more likely to live in poverty or have poor health

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A study has found that bisexual people are more likely to live in poverty or have poor health than other groups.

The study, by Rice University in Texas, looked at over 400,000 people’s health and economic status. Of those people, over 10,000 defined themselves as gay, lesbian or bisexual.

It found that a startlingly high percentage of bisexual people had an annual household income of less than $25,000 (£16,000).

Gay and lesbian people were slightly less likely than straight people to be in that income bracket – 25% of straight men and 30% of straight women were living in poverty, compared with 23% of gay men, and 25% of lesbian women.

However, 40% of bisexual men and 42% of bisexual women were living below the poverty line.

Bisexual people also reported a far greater percentage of poor health. Around 15% of heterosexual people described their health as “poor or fair” compared with around 20% of bisexual.

Men were slightly more likely to report poor health than women.

Study author Professor Bridget Gorman said: “Existing health research on the sexual minority population is sparse and typically does not make distinctions between the different types of sexual minorities.

“We developed this study both to examine the health of these different sexual minority groups and to assess how risk factors for poor health contribute to their overall health.

“If bisexuals are minorities within the minority and experience unique and more extreme forms of discrimination, this might contribute to disparities in things like earnings, educational attainment, the propensity to smoke cigarettes and other factors that affect well-being.”

The study can be found in full here.

In study in Scotland found that half of all bisexual people had experienced biphobia when accessing services.