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Title page for ETD etd-06262019-171904

Type of Document Dissertation
Author Eppink, Samuel T
URN etd-06262019-171904
Title Three Essays on LGBT Economics and Policy
Degree PhD
Department Economics
Advisory Committee
Advisor Name Title
Christopher S. Carpenter Committee Chair
Andrew Dustan Committee Member
Federico H. Gutierrez Committee Member
Gilbert Gonzales Committee Member
  • STI
  • Economics
  • LGBT
  • Earnings
  • Marriage
Date of Defense 2019-05-09
Availability unrestricted
This dissertation examines the socioeconomic and health profiles of sexual minorities, especially with respect to how they are impacted by public policy. In the first chapter I explore the relationship between legal same-sex marriage (SSM) and rates of common sexually transmitted infections. Results indicate that legal SSM is associated with a significant decrease in syphilis rates, an especially strong proxy for risky sex between men. In the second chapter, which is joint work with Christopher S. Carpenter, we make use of new information on sexual orientation to first reproduce the well-documented finding of an earnings premium for self-identified lesbians. However, these data also show—for the first time in the literature—that self-identified gay men also earn significantly more than comparable heterosexual men. In the third chapter, which is joint work with Christopher S. Carpenter and Gilbert Gonzales, we provide the first large-scale evidence on transgender status, gender identity, and socioeconomic outcomes in the United States using representative data from 31 states. Individuals who identify as transgender have significantly lower employment rates, lower household incomes, higher poverty rates, and worse self-rated health than otherwise similar men who are not transgender.
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