ePodunk, with the assistance of statistical information compiled by the Urban Institute, offers a great resource on its huge United States community information website: The Gay Index.
The Index measures the proportion of gay/lesbian people in a certain area with the national norm/average, based on statistics gathered through the 2000 US Census and compiled and analyzed by the Urban Institute.
The basic rule is that the number “100” represents the exact national norm/average. A city with a gay index of 140, for example, would show that the number of gay and lesbian people living in that city is 40% larger than the national norm. A city index of 80, for example, would show that the number was 20% less than the national norm.
Although I believe I’ve used ePodunk’s “Gay Index” for posts in the past, I have never compiled a short and concise list of the gay indices of North Carolina’s biggest, most well-known cities.
So, today… here it goes (the numbers below represent the combined gay male & lesbian indices, for example, Raleigh’s gay male index is 120 and the lesbian index is 92, but the combined index is 106; You can click on the city names in order to see the individual gay male v. lesbian idices):
- Charlotte – 119
- Raleigh – 106
- Greensboro – 103
- Winston-Salem – 107
- Durham – 152
- Fayetteville – 72
- Cary – 74
- High Point – 86
- Wilmington – 93
- Asheville – 183
- Chapel Hill – 97
- Carrboro – 117
So if we were to list North Carolina’s cities by size – gay size, instead of population size (like above), this is what we would get:
- Chapel Hill
- High Point
I would caution, however, that these gay indices do not include an accurate or adequate count of bisexual or transgender people. It is also likely that these numbers do not include the huge amounts of LGBT college students living, working and learning in these cities, as the information is based on US Census data (students would most likely report census information with their parents, in their hometowns [Edit: Commenter Justin corrected me, the US Census does/can include college students at their schools]).
Here is what ePodunk has to say about the Gay Index:
The gay index is a comparative score, based on the percentage of people reporting in the 2000 U.S. Census that they lived in a same-sex partnership.
A score of 100 is the national norm. A number above 100 indicates that the local proportion of same-sex unmarried households is higher than the national average. For example, 140 would mean that the proportion was 40 percent higher than the national norm. A score of 60 would be 40 percent lower.
This statistic is not an absolute measure of gay households. Not everyone who lives in such a relationship is gay; not everyone who is gay lives in such a relationship; and some who do may feel uncomfortable saying so on a census return. However, responses to the question, asked of all U.S. households, provide a good indicator of gay relationships in a community.
ePodunk publishes three measures: a combined gay male/lesbian score called the gay index, a score for gay males and a score for lesbians. The indexes are provided for the 1,360 U.S. communities in which 50 or more couples reported living in such relationships.