LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) – A new report has found that broadcast television shows for the 2018 season are featuring the highest ever percentage of characters who identify as gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender or queer (LGBTQ).
According to the Where We Are On TV annual report released Thursday by the advocacy group GLAAD, a record 8.8 percent of all series regulars on scripted primetime shows on broadcast television this season identify as LGBTQ. That equates to 75 of the 857 regular characters.
This broke last year’s record of 6.4 percent, and is the highest number since GLAAD began tracking this statistic 14 years ago.
The report also found that, for the first time, LGBTQ people of color on broadcast TV outnumbered white people by a rate of 50 percent to 49 percent.
Of the five broadcast networks — ABC, CBS, The CW, FOX and NBC – the CW had the highest rate of LGBTQ characters, with 16 percent. Earlier this year, the CW announced that actress and activist Nicole Maines would play TV’s first ever transgender superhero on the show “Supergirl.”
The number of LGBTQ characters on cable primetime scripted series jumped from 103 last year to 120 this year, GLAAD found.
Meanwhile, on streaming services Netflix, Amazon and Hulu, there were 75 LGBTQ regulars in 2018, up from 51 in 2017.
However, the report also found that only 43 percent of series regulars on broadcast shows were women, which was the same number as last year.
“GLAAD is calling on the industry to make sure that within the next two years, 10 percent of series regular characters on primetime scripted broadcast series are LGBTQ,” GLAAD said in a statement. “This is an important next step towards ensuring that our entertainment reflects the world in which it is created.”
To read the full report, click here.