Why do gay males have generally lower incomes than straight males?
Gay males have more education than straight males, but they do not choose male-dominated professions as often as straight males do. In fact, they choose female-dominated and/or service professions much more often. Male-dominated professions (like construction) have generally higher wages than female-dominated professions (like secretarial). Gay males work fewer hours than straight males.
Why do lesbians generally have higher income than straight females? It’s almost the inverse of the gay-male trend.
Lesbians also have more education than straight females, but they work longer hours – because, generally speaking, they are less likely to have children to take care of at home. Lesbians are overrepresented in male-dominated professions that pay better than female-dominated professions.
The average age at which people come out as gay, lesbian or bisexual has fallen steadily over the last four decades, according to Stonewall, the gay rights group.
A poll for Stonewall of 1,500 people who were already out found that among the over-60s the average age they had come out was 37. But those in their 30s had come out at an average age of 21, and in the group aged 18 to 24 it was 17.
The survey, conducted via social networking sites, does not take account of the numbers of people who know they are gay or bisexual but have not come out. But Stonewall said it nonetheless revealed a pattern of people having the confidence to come out earlier.
Among the 33 respondents aged over 60 only five had come out under the age of 18. Several had only done so in the last 10 years.
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Dalia Fleming, 21, who came out when she was 15, said that accessible role models made coming out easier for young people, although there were still not enough.
Changes including the introduction of civil partnerships and the end of Section 28 – which banned the "promotion" of homosexuality in schools – had also helped, she said.
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