New Zealand has the highest number of same-sex couples living together in the world, a survey has revealed.
The country’s population of 2.3 million is the highest in the Western Hemisphere, with almost a quarter of people living in same-gender relationships, according to the survey by the Pew Research Centre.
The New Zealand Household Panel Survey found that the number of people who have a partner in a same- gender relationship rose by a whopping 60 per cent between 2009 and 2011.
That compares with 8 per cent in New Zealand in 1980.
This was a result of a dramatic rise in the number and number of gay men and women in New Zealand, which has been booming in recent years, and a strong economy, the report found.
In 2011, New Zealand accounted for just 0.8 per cent of the world population but made up 11 per cent, or 2.7 million, of all same- sex couples in the country.
In contrast, Canada accounted for 4 per cent and the US, with its 11 per 10,000 population, had just 3 per cent.
The same was true in Britain, where the UK is the only Western country where the proportion of gay people in its population was lower than the US or Canada.
In Australia, the percentage of same sex couples was just 0 of 1,000, meaning that the country has one of the lowest proportions of same gender couples.
There were 1,832 same- marriage marriages in Australia in 2012, compared with 1,631 in 2009.
The UK was also one of few countries where the number had fallen, with just 1,735 same- love unions.
New Zealand also had the highest proportion of people aged 65 and over living together, with the majority living with a partner, with one in five living together and one in six not.
It also had one of Europe’s highest rates of same child marriage, with a one in four chance that two parents would have the same child.
A study in the British Journal of Sociology found that one in eight New Zealand men and one out of every 10 women had been sexually abused as children.
The survey found that in general, New Zelanders felt that they were treated differently from their counterparts in other countries, with New Zealand’s social acceptance of same and opposite-sex relationships, particularly in relationships involving more than one person, often lacking in support, a lack of clear expectations, and an absence of social skills.
This meant that there were many more people who felt that same-sexual relationships were not accepted than were heterosexual relationships, it said.
However, the survey also found that while New Zealand had the largest proportion of same parents in the western world, they were less likely to have had a child with a same sex partner.
New Zaleans also tended to be more likely to be attracted to heterosexual people.
There was a “possibility” that the survey did not ask whether the respondents identified with the same sexual orientation, and there was also a “minimal likelihood” that respondents did not identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender.
However it is unclear whether this would have a significant effect on the results of the survey.
This is a significant departure from other Western countries, which have been more tolerant towards same sex relationships, but which have not seen a dramatic increase in the proportion or the number, of same marriage couples in recent decades.
Topics:family-and-children,religion-and/or-beliefs,community-and of-society,science-and.science-fiction,government-and or-politics,marriage,australia