Activists in Canada are disputing statistics from the government in Ottawa released yesterday that show just 1 percent of the nation’s population identify themselves as homosexual.

The figures from the Canadian Community Health Survey also indicate 0.7 percent of Canadians said they were bisexual, the Canadian Press news service reported.

Advocates for homosexual rights cast doubt on the government’s numbers.

“What’s clear is that there is under-reporting,” Laurie Arron, director of advocacy for the “gay”-rights group Egale told the news service, claiming the number of homosexuals is somewhere between 5 and 10 percent.

“I think you can definitely count on under-reporting, there’s no question of that,” said Michael Botnick, a professor of anthropology and sociology at the University of British Columbia.

The survey found 1.3 percent of men considered themselves homosexual compared to 0.7 percent of women. Some 0.9 percent of women said they were bisexual, compared to 0.6 of men.

Homosexual activists claim there is reluctance among respondents to honestly report their sexual orientation on a government survey.

Botnick argued homosexuality is hard to define statistically.

“Sexuality is a very slippery and elusive issue that has little to do with gay, homosexual or queer, however anyone wants to describe it,” he said.

“Somebody who has never had a same-sex experience, ever in their lives, but has fantasies, does that make them gay, or not? Maybe they are, but they don’t qualify.”

According to the Canadian Press report, Quebec reported the highest number of homosexuals or bisexuals at 2.3 percent of the population. British Columbia followed at 1.9 percent, New Brunswick with 1.6 percent and Ontario at 1.5 percent.

The belief that 10 percent of the population is homosexual is based on discredited research done by Indiana University zoologist Dr. Alfred Kinsey in the mid-20th century. More recent research puts the number between 1 and 3 percent.

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