Attitudes to same-sex marriage

Parliament house flag post

Attitudes to same-sex marriage

Posted 17/11/2010 by Janet Phillips

The Federal Parliament is currently debating a motion on same-sex relationships moved by Adam Bandt—the recently elected Australian Greens party member for the seat of Melbourne. The motion notes there is ‘widespread support for equal marriage in the Australian community’ and calls on ‘all parliamentarians to gauge their constituents’ views on the issue of marriage equality’. As a result of this and other related debate, there is currently great interest in what public opinion polls may be able to tell us regarding changing attitudes towards same-sex marriage.

Not surprisingly, public opinion polls on this issue, as on any other, can differ markedly depending on the questions asked, the context and the survey reach—some may have been directly commissioned by interest groups, while others may reflect the views of particular geographic, demographic or socio-economic groups. However, the outcomes of several polls from a variety of groups conducted over the last six years or so may suggest a shift in public opinion in favour of same-sex marriage. The following is a very brief chronological listing of selected polls.

Opinion polls
2010
Just published Roy Morgan Research survey data indicate that attitudes towards homosexuality and whether gay couples should be allowed to adopt children have become more liberal at a national level over the last 12 years. However, 'anti-gay sentiment remains entrenched in politically sensitive areas such as Sydney's west and south-west, pockets of Melbourne's south-east and in regional Queensland'. For more detail, including results by electorate, see: M Davis, 'Country divided as support for gay marriage varies wildly', Sydney Morning Herald, 15 November 2010; and 'The tricky political topography of same-sex marriage', SMH.com website, 15 November 2010.

On its website, campaign organisation, Essential Media Communications, states it ‘exists to help the organisations we believe in win campaigns’. Their latest Essential Report, published on 15 November 2010, includes the results of a survey which found 53 per cent of respondents supported same-sex marriage. 

Same-sex marriage lobby group, Australian Marriage Equality, commissioned two Galaxy polls in 2009 and 2010. Their fact sheet, Marriage Equality and Public Opinion, summarises a selection of these and other poll results between 2004 and 2010. These poll results show an increase in support for same-sex marriage from around 40 per cent to about 60 per cent over the last six years. The October 2010 Australian Marriage Equality Same Sex Marriage Study found ‘the majority (62 per cent) of Australians agree that same-sex couples should be able to marry'.

2009
In a poll published in the Sydney Morning Herald on 8 August 2009, 59.6 per cent answered 'yes' to the question, 'Should same-sex marriages be recognised by the Federal Government?'

In November 2009, the Senate Legal and Constitutional Affairs Committee held an inquiry into the Marriage Equality Bill 2009. The final report stated: 'This bill recognises the increasing support for same-sex marriage in Australia, with opinion polls over the years showing a steady rise in support for marriage equality'.

2007
In June 2007, a Galaxy Poll conducted on behalf of the GetUp lobby group found that 57 per cent of the 1100 people interviewed supported same-sex marriage while 37 per cent were opposed. See: M Schubert, ‘Public backs gay unions, equality’, The Age, 21 June 2007.

2004
In June 2004, a survey conducted by Newspoll found 38 per cent of respondents in favour of same-sex marriage and 44 per cent against.

Image source: 'Sweden approves same-sex marriage legislation', http://www.topnews.in/sweden-approves-samesex-marriage-legislation-2146228


Thank you for your comment. If it does not require moderation, it will appear shortly.
Facebook LinkedIn Twitter Add | Email Print

FlagPost

Flagpost is a blog on current issues of interest to members of the Australian Parliament


Parliamentary Library Logo showing Information Analysis & Advice

Archive

Syndication

Tagcloud

immigration refugees elections taxation asylum Parliament criminal law election results Australian Bureau of Statistics social security disability citizenship Indigenous Australians political parties United Kingdom UK Parliament Census statistics banking early childhood education Middle East Australian foreign policy OECD Australian Electoral Commission voting mental health Employment military history by-election election timetable China; Economic policy; Southeast Asia; Africa housing Speaker; House of Representatives; Parliament Productivity Defence income management asylum seekers High Court; Indigenous; Indigenous Australians; Native Title Senate ACT Indigenous education Norfolk Island External Territories leadership aid Papua New Guinea emissions reduction fund; climate change child care funding Electoral reform politics refugees immigration asylum Canada procurement Australian Public Service firearms Indigenous health constitution High Court e-voting internet voting nsw state elections 44th Parliament women 2015 International Women's Day public policy ABS Population Age Pension Death penalty capital punishment execution Bali nine Bali bombings Trade skilled migration Private health insurance Medicare Financial sector EU national security fuel China soft power education violence against women domestic violence Fiji India Disability Support Pension disability employment welfare reform Tasmania Antarctica China Diplomacy Australian Sports Anti-Doping Agency World Anti-Doping Agency Sport ASADA Federal Court WADA ADRV by-elections state and territories terrorism terrorist groups Bills corruption anti-corruption integrity fraud bribery transparency corporate ownership whistleblower G20 economic reform science innovation research and development transport standards Afghanistan Australian Defence Force NATO United States social media Members of Parliament Scottish referendum Middle East; national security; terrorism higher education Higher Education Loan Program HECS welfare policy pensions social services welfare ASIO Law Enforcement Australian Federal Police Australian Secret Intelligence Service intelligence community Criminal Code Amendment (Misrepresentation of Age to a Minor) Bill 2013 sexual abuse online grooming sexual assault of minors labour force workers

Show all
Show less
Back to top