The Williams Institute at UCLA released its report of data collected in 2017 on the LGBT community:
• Using data gathered by the Gallup polling organization, 4.1 percent of adults identify as LGBT across the U.S.
• The state with the highest percent of people identifying as LGBT is Vermont with 5.3 percent. Vermont was the first state with relationship recognition. Only Washington, D.C., beats Vermont with 8.6 percent of adults identifying as LGBT.
• Vermont is followed by the first marriage equality state, Massachusetts, and California and Oregon with 4.9 percent each. Nevada is next with 4.8 percent.
• In Texas, 3.6 percent of adults identify as LGBT. That number is close to neighboring states Oklahoma, with 3.5 percent, and Louisiana, with 3.7 percent. New Mexico jumps to 4.2 percent.
• The state with the lowest percent of adults identifying themselves as LGBT is South Dakota at 2 percent.
• Williams Institute found that discrimination in Texas is expensive. Reducing housing and employment discrimination against transgender residents would save the state $1.3 million in Medicaid expenses and $370,000 in homeless shelter expenses annually.
• Reducing stigma that causes depression to a rate comparable to the straight community would have a positive impact on 25,400 Texans and benefit the state’s economy by $385.3 million annually in reduced healthcare costs and increased productivity.
— David Taffet