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port of harlem magazine
October 31 - November 13, 2008
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Unmarried Households Still the Majority - Unmarried Partnerships Continue to Grow
Recently released Census data reaffirm that unmarried people head the majority (50.3%) of households in the United States.  This figure has held steady since 2005.   Nicky Grist, executive director of the Alternatives to Marriage Project, says "Policy makers and the public need to recognize that being married is no longer the norm.  While most people marry at some point in their lives, the unmarried portion of the population continues its decades of steady growth."

In “Lifestyles 2008,” in the May to July 2008 Port of Harlem print issue, Grist revealed the plight of the unmarried in America.  She added,  "Marital status cannot be equated with child rearing.  For example, there is an often repeated myth that the income tax system helps children by favoring married couples.  If that is really the goal, then the data clearly show that giving tax bonuses to married people shortchanges more than a third of our children and lets childless couples keep the change."

More than one third of households with minor children (33.8%) are headed by unmarried people, while more than four in ten married couples (41.1%) do not live with minor children. More than 6.2 million households identify as unmarried partners, an increase of 3.2% over 2006 and 13.4% over 2000.  Same-sex couples comprise 12% of unmarried partner households. The Alternatives to Marriage Project fights marital status discrimination and the stigma againsting single or unmarried.
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