US survey suggests fewer people are bi

Figures published by the USA’s Center for Disease Control suggest less than 3 percent of the U.S. population identifies as gay, lesbian or bisexual. An additional 1.1 percent didn’t know how to answer the question, had another identity than gay, straight or bi, or refused to answer.

0.7% were recorded as bisexual while 1.6% identified as lesbian or gay.

However, it’s hard to imagine every bi or every LGB person would have been comfortable openly labelling their sexual orientation to a stranger – having grown up in a culture where being bi or gay can be strongly stigmatised.

A UK study in 2010 by the Office for National Statistics suggested 0.5% of the population were bisexual, 1% lesbian or gay, and another fraction of a percent had other non-straight identities such as queer and asexual or consciously avoiding a label.

The UK study suffered a similar problem in obtaining identity information – but was carried out on a much bigger sample size. The US survey covered some 33,000 people whereas the ONS study interviewed 450,000 people.

Read the CDC report here.