New study reveals exactly how many LGBTQ+ people there are in America

USA pride flag

Just over seven per cent of people in the United States are LGBTQ+, new data published on Wednesday (22 February) has revealed.

The research, carried out by Gallup, found that, after small increases in 2020 and 2021, US adults identifying as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, or something other than heterosexual, in 2022 now make up 7.2 per cent of the population. 

The firm explains that the data is based on aggregated polling figures from 2022 Gallup telephone surveys, encompassing interviews with more than 10,000 adults. In each survey, Gallup asked respondents if they identified as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender or something else, allowing them to choose various identities.

By comparison, 86 per cent of US adults said they are straight/heterosexual, while a further seven per cent chose not to answer the question.

More than half the LGBTQ+ respondents identified as bisexual, making it the most common identity within America’s queer population. That equates to 4.2 per cent of all US adults. 

Of the 7.2 per cent, around one in five adults are gay, one in seven say they are lesbian, and slightly fewer than one in 10 identify as transgender.

You may like to watch

For the first time, Gallup included responses from people who are not heterosexual but identified as something other than lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender. 

Most of these individuals said they were queer, pansexual or asexual. This is between one and per two per cent of LGBT adults – equivalent to 0.1 per cent of the entire adult population. 

Gen Z most likely to be queer

Gallup’s figures showed that Gen Z adults – people born between 1997 and 2004 – are more likely to be LGBTQ+ than older generations. This mirrored in data from the UK’s 2021 census.  

In the US, 19.7 per cent of Gen Z are LGBTQ+. The rate is 11.2 per cent among millennials and 3.3 per cent or less for older generations.

Generation Z were also most likely to identify as bisexual, again this was mirrored in the UK data, with 13.1 per cent saying they are bisexual, 3.4 per cent identifying as gay, 2.2 per cent as lesbian and 1.9 per cent as transgender.

“LGBT identification has become much more common in the U.S. in the past decade,” the researchers concluded.

“In the past year, the figure has been stable. With many more younger than older adults seeing themselves as something other than heterosexual, the LGBT share of the entire U.S. adult population can be expected to grow in future years.

“However, this growth depends on younger people who enter adulthood in future years continuing to be much more likely to identify as LGBT than their parents, grandparents and great-grandparents.”

The 7.2 per cent figure is double what it was when Gallup first measured LGBT identities a decade ago.