Portland Ranks Second-Highest Percentage of Same-Sex Couple Households



Oregon proudly identifies itself as an LGBTQ-friendly state. Nearly three percent of those living in the Portland-Hillsboro-Vancouver metropolitan statistical area (MSA) indicate they have a same-sex spouse or domestic partner, reports Willamette Week.

According to a recent brief about the 2019 American Community Survey conducted as part of the U.S. Census, Portland has the second-highest percentage of same-sex households of any metropolitan area in the nation, behind only San Francisco.

Same-sexOf those responding, 1.4 percent of married couples in the Portland MSA were of the same gender, and 1.2 percent of unmarried couples.

Portland-Hillsboro-Vancouver placing second in the U.S. may be surprising since the gay communities in these cities are visible but relatively quiet.

Rounding Out the Top 10 Same-Sex Couple Households

Coming in third is Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue, Washington MSA. The fourth and sixth are in Florida — Orlando-Kissimmee-Sanford and Miami-Fort Lauderdale-Pompano Beach, respectively.

Coming in fifth is Austin-Round Rock-Georgetown, Texas. Seventh is Boston-Cambridge-Newton, Massachusetts, and eighth is Denver-Aurora-Lakewood, Colorado.

Numbers nine and 10 are Phoenix-Mesa-Chandler. Arizona, and Baltimore-Columbia-Towson, Maryland, respectively.

Same-sexNew York City, Los Angeles, and Chicago LGBTQ communities did not make the top 10 list. These cities have larger numbers of same-sex couples, but their overall percentages are smaller due to their dense populations.

Oregon Laws Protect Same-Sex Couples and the LGBTQ Community

Oregon laws recognizing domestic partnerships between two men or women went into effect in 2008. The state legalized same-gender marriages in 2014.

Moreover, the Gender Equity Law enacted in 2008 protects LGBTQ individuals and families against housing, employment, and public accommodations discrimination. Same-sex couples are allowed to adopt and become foster parents.

Written by Cathy Milne-Ware


Willamette Weekly: Portland Has the Second-Highest Percentage of Same-Sex Households in the Country; by Shannon Gormley
The San Diego Tribune: Diverse group of cities have highest rates of gay households; by Mike Schneider
American Community Survey Briefs: Same-Sex Couple Households: 2019; by Laquitta Walker and Danielle Taylor

Featured and Top Image Courtesy of Robert Couse-Baker’s Flickr Page – Creative Commons License
Inset Images by Cathy Milne-Ware