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Irish Men and Women in Same-Sex Partnerships in the United States

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Publication Date: March 2008

Author(s): Gary J Gates

Topic: Population and demographics (Ethnic and racial groups)
Social conditions (Marriage and family life)

Type: Brief

Coverage: United States Ireland


The Irish government has announced its intention to enact a civil partnership law that would for the first time offer formal legal recognition to same-sex couples in the Republic of Ireland. The 2006 Irish Census revealed that there were 2,090 same-sex cohabiting couples in the country. Analyses of data from the United States Census Bureau suggest these are not the only couples who might avail themselves of civil partnership: More than 1,200 Irish-born men and women are living with a same-sex partner in the United States. They are predominantly female and highly educated. One in seven reports raising children. Civil partnership legislation could provide economic benefits to Ireland, enticing some of these talented same-sex couples to relocate back to Ireland and making the country more competitive in the global creative economy.