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AUSTIN (KXAN) — A larger share of the youngest generation of Americans shared that they identify as part of the LGBTQ community, according to new findings released Wednesday by a well-known polling organization.
Gallup surveyed more than 10,000 people by phone last year, and pollsters said the group most likely to say they’re lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender or something other than heterosexual is the adult members of Generation Z. The findings showed that 19.7% of those born between 1997 and 2004 self-identified as LGBTQ. These people would have been 18 to 25 years old last year.
When Gallup broke down the results to other age groups, the rate of LGBTQ identification was 11.2% among millennials and 3.3% or less among older generations.
After reviewing all the responses collected by Gallup, pollsters said they learned the collective number of Americans adults who identified as LGBTQ held steady in 2022 at 7.2%. That’s double the percentage, though, of when Gallup began to ask about LGBTQ identification a decade ago.
“LGBT identification has become much more common in the U.S. in the past decade, though in the past year, the figure has been stable,” Gallup said in a news release Wednesday. “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.”
Gallup did not make numbers available Wednesday specific to Texas or any other state.
However, these numbers trending upwards come at a time when Texas lawmakers could enact more restrictions on the LGBTQ community. Bills introduced this year include banning health care options for transgender children in the state as well as preventing trans student-athletes from competing on college sports teams that match their gender identity. Recently, Gov. Greg Abbott said he’d support signing those proposals into law, but he did not list these bills among his emergency legislative items when he shared what those are at last week’s State of the State address.
A poll released by Gallup last summer showed that support reached an all-time high in the United States for same-sex marriage. Those figures found that 71% of Americans agreed same-sex couples should have their marriages recognized as legal and share the same rights as other unions. That approval rate was one percentage point higher than 2021’s number, which previously was the highest ever measured.