Column One:
Eye on Unmarried America

August 27,  2007  



Census Bureau promotes 'singles week'

By Thomas F. Coleman

Throughout the year, the United States Census Bureau issues press releases calling public attention to commemorative days, weeks, and months.  These "Facts for Features" releases acknowledge a variety of occasions, such as Mother's Day, Father's Day, Labor Day, Older Americans Month, and Hispanic Heritage Month.

This year, as it has done for the past several years, the agency has issued a press release noting the observance of Unmarried and Single Americans Week.

Below is the press release with demographic information the Census Bureau is passing along to the public about unmarried individuals, couples and families.

Special Edition

Unmarried and Single Americans Week
Sept. 16-22, 2007

“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. 16-22 in 2007) 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.

Single Life

92 million
Number of unmarried and single Americans 18 and older in 2006. This group comprised 42 percent of all U.S. residents 18 and older. <>

Percentage of unmarried and single Americans 18 and older who are women. <>

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

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

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. <>


Percentage of births to unmarried women during the year ending in June 2004. <>

12.9 million
Number of single parents living with their children in 2006. Of these, 10.4 million were single mothers. <>

Percentage of households headed by single parents in 2006, up from 5 percent in 1970. <>

Percentage of opposite-sex, unmarried-partner households that include children. <>

Number of unmarried grandparents who were caregivers for their grandchildren in 2005. They comprised nearly three in 10 grandparents who were responsible for their grandchildren. (Source: 2005 American Community Survey)

Unmarried Couples

5 million
Number of unmarried-partner households in 2006. These households consist of a householder living with someone of the opposite sex who was identified as their unmarried partner. <>


The number of dating service establishments nationwide as of 2002. These establishments, which include Internet dating services, employed nearly 4,300 people and pulled in $489 million in revenues. <>


Percentage of voters in the 2004 presidential election who were unmarried. (Source: Voting and Registration in the Election of November 2004, at <>)


Percentage of unmarried people 25 and older in 2006 who were high school graduates. <>

Percentage of unmarried people 25 and older in 2006 with a bachelor’s degree or more education. <>


To read other editions of Column One, click here.

© Unmarried America 2007

Thomas F. Coleman, Executive Director of Unmarried America, is an attorney with 33 years of experience in singles' rights, family diversity, domestic partner benefits, and marital status discrimination.  Each week he adds a new commentary to Column One: Eye on Unmarried America. E-mail: Unmarried America is a nonprofit information service for unmarried employees, consumers, taxpayers, and voters.