Acceptance of the LGBT Community Is Growing Globally, But Equality Is a Long Way Off
Today, on the International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia, Logo, a leading brand inspired by the LGBT community, has released initial findings from the inaugural ILGA-RIWI 2016 “Global Attitudes Survey on LGBTI People.”*
This survey of nearly 100,000 online individuals in 65 countries including Brazil, China, Congo, Egypt, France, Iraq, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Uganda, and the United States, is the largest survey of attitudes toward LGBT people around the world.**
Overall, the study found that while acceptance of the LGBT community is growing globally, there is a long road ahead for equality.
Here are other key findings from this research:
There is global support for the human rights of LGBT people. Two-thirds of global respondents agreed that human rights should be applied to everyone, regardless of whom they feel attracted to or the gender they identify with. In fact, a majority agreed in all 65 countries.
In Nigeria, where same-sex relations can be punishable by death, 67 percent of respondents agreed with this statement. In India, where earlier this year the Supreme Court heard a challenge to a law that criminalizes LGBT relations which was enacted in 2013, 68 percent of respondents agreed.
Attitudes toward the LGBT community have improved over the last five years. Globally, more than twice as many respondents said their attitudes towards LGBT people have become more favorable in the past 5 years than those whose attitudes have become less favorable (34 percent more vs. 15 percent less favorable).
In every country, respondents who said their attitudes have become more favorable over the last five years reported that knowing someone who is LGBT was the leading reason behind the change. However, this positive trend was not universal. In seven countries (Congo, Fiji, Indonesia, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Nigeria, Uganda), the number of respondents who said their attitudes toward LGBT people have become less favorable over the past 5 years was higher than respondents whose attitudes have become more favorable.
A majority agree that LGBT people should not be fired. Not one of the 65 countries had a majority of respondents agree that companies should be allowed to fire employees for being LGBT. In the U.S., where 29 states lack legal protections preventing LGBT people from being fired for who they are, only 15 percent agreed that companies should be allowed to legally fire an employee for being LGBT.
Support is low for the criminalization of LGBT people. The majority of respondents did not agree that being LGBT should be a crime, despite LGBT criminalization laws existing in at least 75 countries. This includes respondents from countries that currently have laws that criminalize being LGBT or distributing LGBT materials: Russia (54 percent disagree that being LGBT should be a crime); India (49 percent); Jamaica (45 percent); and Morocco (39 percent). A majority of respondents in only 5 countries (Congo, Ghana, Nigeria, Pakistan, Uganda) agreed that being LGBT should be a crime.
Bullying of LGBT youth needs to end. Over half (51 percent) of global respondents believe that bullying of young people who identify or are perceived as LGBT is a significant problem. Nearly half of respondents in North Africa and the Middle East agreed with this statement, which is the highest percentage of agreement from this region on a LGBT issue.
Marriage equality does not yet have strong support. When asked whether same-sex marriage should be legal, only 33 percent globally answered “yes.” Many globally (24 percent on average) answered “don’t know,” while the largest segment (43 percent) answered “no”.
North American and European respondents were most in favor, at 50 percent and 54 percent, respectively. The highest negative responses came from Central Eastern Europe (56 percent), North Africa and the Middle East (56 percent) and the rest of Africa (57 percent). The Netherlands, which was the first country to legalize marriage equality in 2001, and Ireland, which legalized marriage equality by a national vote last year, have some of the lowest levels of opposition (20% and 18%, respectively). In Australia, where marriage equality is currently being debated, 55 percent of respondents said marriage equality should be legal.
Additionally, Logo announces the launch of “Global Ally”:
Logo’s new “Global Ally” initiative paints a picture of the lives of LGBTI activists around the world. Logo partnered with with the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) and OutRight Action International on Global Ally, a year-long multiplatform storytelling project that will feature video interviews with dozens of international LGBTI activists. Global Ally provides Logo’s audience with inside looks into the lives of international LGBTI people and features ways to send direct messages of solidarity and support to activists around the world.
For more information about Logo’s Global Ally: globalally.org
*‘LGBTI’ refers collectively to people who are lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, and/or intersex
**This study was in collaboration with ILGA (The International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans and Intersex Association) and RIWI (a global survey technology company that captures citizen and consumer opinion in every country in the world).