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Facts for Features
CB08-FF.16
July 21, 2008

Unmarried and Single Americans Week
Sept. 21-27, 2008

"National Singles Week" was started by the Buckeye Singles Council in Ohio in the 1980s to celebrate single life and recognize singles and their contributions to society. The week is now widely observed during the third full week of September (Sept. 21-27 in 2008) as "Unmarried and Single Americans Week," an acknowledgment that many unmarried Americans do not identify with the word "single" because they are parents, have partners or are widowed. In this edition of Facts for Features, unmarried people include those who were never married, widowed, or divorced, unless otherwise noted.

Single Life

92 million

Number of unmarried Americans 18 and older in 2006. This group comprised 42 percent of all U.S. residents 18 and older.

54%

Percentage of unmarried Americans 18 and older who are women.

60%

Percentage of unmarried Americans 18 and older who have never been married. Another 25 percent are divorced, and 15 percent are widowed.

15 million

Number of unmarried Americans 65 and older. These older Americans comprise 16 percent of all unmarried and single people 18 and older.

86

Number of unmarried men 18 and older for every 100 unmarried women in the United States.

50.7 million

Number of households maintained by unmarried men or women. These households comprise 44 percent of households nationwide.

30.5 million

Number of people who live alone. They comprise 27 percent of all households, up from 17 percent in 1970.

Source for statements in this section: America's Families and Living Arrangements <http://www.census.gov/newsroom/releases/archives/families_households/cb07-46.html>

Parenting

12.9 million

Number of single parents living with their children in 2006. Of these, 10.4 million were single mothers.
Source: America's Families and Living Arrangements <http://www.census.gov/newsroom/releases/archives/families_households/cb07-46.html>

9%

Percentage of households headed by single parents in 2006, up from 5 percent in 1970.
Source: America's Families and Living Arrangements <http://www.census.gov/newsroom/releases/archives/families_households/cb07-46.html>

39%

Percentage of opposite-sex, unmarried-partner households that include children.
Source: America's Families and Living Arrangements <http://www.census.gov/newsroom/releases/archives/families_households/cb07-46.html>

733,000

Number of unmarried grandparents who were caregivers for their grandchildren in 2006. They comprised about three in 10 grandparents who were responsible for their grandchildren.
Source: 2006 American Community Survey <http://www.census.gov/acs/www/>

Unmarried Couples

6 million

Number of unmarried-partner households in 2006. These include 5.2 million of the opposite sex and 780,000 of the same sex.
Source: 2006 American Community Survey <http://www.census.gov/acs/www/>

Dating

904

The number of dating service establishments nationwide as of 2002. These establishments, which include Internet dating services, employed nearly 4,300 people and generated $489 million in revenues.
Source: 2002 Economic Census <http://www.census.gov/econ/census02/guide/SUBSUMM.HTM>

Voters

36%

Percentage of voters in the 2004 presidential election who were unmarried.
Source: Voting and Registration in the Election of November 2004 <http://www.census.gov/hhes/www/socdemo/voting/>

Education

83%

Percentage of unmarried people 25 and older in 2007 who were high school graduates.
Source: Educational Attainment in the United States: 2007 <http://www.census.gov/newsroom/releases/archives/education/cb08-10.html>

24%

Percentage of unmarried people 25 and older in 2007 with a bachelor's degree or more education.
Source: Educational Attainment in the United States: 2007 <http://www.census.gov/newsroom/releases/archives/education/cb08-10.html>

Following is a list of observances typically covered by the Census Bureau's Facts for Features series:

  • African-American History Month (February)
  • Super Bowl XLII (Feb. 3)
  • Valentine's Day (Feb. 14)
  • Women's History Month (March)
  • Irish-American Heritage Month (March)/
          St. Patrick's Day (March 17)
  • Asian/Pacific American Heritage Month (May)
  • Older Americans Month (May)
  • Cinco de Mayo (May 5)
  • Mother's Day (May 11)
  • Hurricane Season Begins (June 1)
  • Father's Day (June 15)
  • The Fourth of July (July 4)
  • Anniversary of Americans With Disabilities Act (July 26)
  • Back to School (August)
  • Labor Day (Sept. 1)
  • Grandparents Day (Sept. 7)
  • Hispanic Heritage Month (Sept. 15-Oct. 15)
  • Unmarried and Single Americans Week (Sept. 21-27)
  • Halloween (Oct. 31)
  • American Indian/Alaska Native Heritage Month (November)
  • Veterans Day (Nov. 11)
  • Thanksgiving Day (Nov. 27)
  • The Holiday Season (December)

Editor’s note: The preceding data were collected from a variety of sources and may be subject to sampling variability and other sources of error. Facts for Features are customarily released about two months before an observance in order to accommodate magazine production timelines. Questions or comments should be directed to the Census Bureau’s Public Information Office: telephone: 301-763-3030; fax: 301-763-3762; or e-mail: <PIO@census.gov>.

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Source: U.S. Census Bureau | Public Information Office | PIO@census.gov | Last Revised: February 10, 2014