1mn Brits identify as lesbian, gay or bisexual – official stats
The Office for National Statistics (ONS), which released the figures on Wednesday, noted a “statistically significant increase” in the number of LGB people in Britain in 2016, up from 1.7 percent in 2015.
The figure, however, is considerably lower than other estimates.
According to leading LGBT charity Stonewall, the figure is more likely to be between 5 and 7 percent, while others have put it as high as 10.
A Stonewall spokesman said this may be a sign of how LGB people are still struggling to open up about their sexuality.
“Although people may feel comfortable answering an anonymous survey, they may struggle to open up about their identity with friends, family or colleagues,” the spokesman said, according to the Guardian.
“To ensure that LGBT people feel safe and supported, it is vital to recognize the discrimination and anti-LGBT abuse that still exists.
“Our recent hate crime research shows that one in five LGBT people have experienced a hate crime or incident due to their sexual orientation and/or gender identity in the last 12 months.”
The survey also revealed one in 25 young people identify as part of the LGB community, with 4.1 percent of 16 to 24-year-olds identifying as such - up from 3.3 percent in 2015.
The ONS figures also found 2.3 percent of UK men said they are LGB, compared to 1.6 percent of women.
Scotland was the region in the UK with the highest LGB population at 2.2 percent, while England followed with 1.9 percent.