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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Census Snapshot: Rhode Island

  • Author(s): Romero, Adam P
  • Baumle, Amanda
  • Badgett, M.V. Lee
  • Gates, Gary J
  • et al.

Using data from the U.S. Census Bureau, this report provides demographic and economic information about same-sex couples and same-sex couples raising children in Rhode Island. We compare same-sex “unmarried partners,” which the Census Bureau defines as an unmarried couple who “shares living quarters and has a close personal relationship,” to different-sex married couples in Rhode Island.

In many ways, the over 2,400 same-sex couples living in Rhode Island are similar to married couples. According to Census 2000, they live throughout the state, are racially and ethnically diverse, have partners that depend upon one another financially, and actively participate in the Rhode Island economy. Census data also show that 12% of same-sex couples in Rhode Island are raising children. However, same-sex couples in Rhode Island, particularly those with children, have fewer economic resources to provide for their families than do their married counterparts. They have lower household incomes, on average, and lower rates of home ownership.

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