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There Are At Least 47,000 Gay Couples In Australia Who Can't Get Married

Census data is out...and so are a lot of Aussies.

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The number of same-sex couples in Australia has increased by a massive 42% in the past five years, according to the census.

A cheerful married gay couple outdoors with dog.
Creatista / Getty Images

A cheerful married gay couple outdoors with dog.

In data released on Tuesday from the 2016 census, the number of same-sex couples counted was listed as 47,000.

This is a whopping 42% more than the 33,000 counted in 2011, and a 81% increase from the 26,000 counted a decade before in 2006.

The census counts couples who were together on census night – not everybody in a same-sex relationship. It also does not count the number of people who are LGBT.

But despite the surge, same-sex marriage is still not legal in Australia – meaning there are now at least 47,000 couples who can't walk down the aisle.

If Australia's 47,000 same-sex couples got married at an average cost of $36,200 per wedding, it would inject $1.7billion into the economy

The composition of Australian families barely changed between 2011 and 2016.

Of the 6 million families counted on census night, 45% were couples with children. 38% were couples without kids, and 16% were single-parent families.

Single mums make up 82% of all single-parent households.

Lane Sainty is a reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in Sydney, Australia.

Contact Lane Sainty at

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