Pride and Prejudice: Same-Sex Marriage Legalization Announcements and LGBT Hate-Crimes

46 Pages Posted: 1 May 2019

See all articles by Zehra Valencia

Zehra Valencia

University of South Carolina - Department of Economics

Breyon Williams

University of South Carolina - Department of Economics

Robert Pettis

University of South Carolina - Department of Economics

Date Written: March 26, 2019

Abstract

We examine whether same-sex marriage legalization announcements impact the occurrence of LGBT hate-crimes. We exploit variation in the timing of same-sex marriage legalization announcements across states, using a difference-in-differences design. We find that a same-sex marriage legalization announcement leads to a reduction in the LGBT hate-crime rate of 0.111 per 100,000 people from a base of 0.3. This result is mostly driven by reductions in violent hate-crimes. There is also evidence of a reduction in property hate-crimes. Additional analyses indicate that the effect is stronger in counties with a large share of likely perpetrators. Our results show suggestive evidence that same-sex marriage bans have the opposite effect on the LGBT hate-crime rate. The results demonstrate that salient LGBT-specific policy announcements are effective at reducing hate-crimes based on sexual orientation.

Keywords: hate-crimes, public policies, same-sex marriage

JEL Classification: K3, K42

Suggested Citation

Valencia, Zehra and Williams, Breyon and Pettis, Robert, Pride and Prejudice: Same-Sex Marriage Legalization Announcements and LGBT Hate-Crimes (March 26, 2019). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3362835 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3362835

Zehra Valencia (Contact Author)

University of South Carolina - Department of Economics ( email )

1014 Green Street
Columbia, SC 29208
United States

HOME PAGE: http://https://sites.google.com/view/zehravalencia/home

Breyon Williams

University of South Carolina - Department of Economics ( email )

Columbia, SC
United States

HOME PAGE: http://www.breyononline.com

Robert Pettis

University of South Carolina - Department of Economics ( email )

Columbia, SC
United States

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