Over half of Singaporeans have a negative reaction to a relative coming out as LGBTQ—survey –

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Singapore — A recent survey showed 53 percent of Singaporean respondents reacting negatively to a hypothetical situation wherein a close family member would come out to them as a member of the LGBTQ+ community.

A survey of 887 respondents in Singapore was conducted by Blackbox Research regarding issues concerning the lesbian, gay, bi-sexual, transgender and queer community (LGBTQ). The Blackbox survey, which was commissioned by Yahoo Singapore, ranged from questions about Pink Dot, the annual rally to support LGBTQ in the country, to changes in the legal status of the community in different countries.

The survey asked the respondents if they had either positive or negative responses to various statements related to LGBTQ concerns.

For the questions about a hypothetical situation wherein a family member discloses to the respondent that he or she is LGBTQ, below are the results.

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The question asked was, “A close family member reveals to you that he/she is LGBTQ. How would you react to that situation?”

  • 14 percent expressed a strongly negative reaction
  • 39 percent expressed a somewhat negative reaction
  • 34 percent expressed a somewhat positive reaction
  • 13 percent expressed a strongly positive reaction

A total of 53 percent expressed a negative reaction, in comparison 47 percent expressed a positive one.

In the hypothetical situation of a colleague disclosing to respondents that he or she is LGBTQ, the situation is reversed, with 53 percent reporting a positive reaction and 46 percent a negative one.

Another question the survey asked centered around the marriage of Li Huanwu, the son of Lee Hsien Yang, who is the brother of Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong. Mr Li is also the grandson of Singapore’s founding Prime Minister Lee Kuan Yew.

On May 24 of this year, Mr Li and his longtime boyfriend Dr Heng Yirui got married in South Africa. Lee Hsien Yang and his family, as well as Dr Heng’s family, were present at the festivities.

Fifty-four percent of the respondents of the Blackbox survey reacted negatively to the statement about Mr Li and Dr Heng’s marriage, and 46 percent had a positive reaction to it.

A working paper published earlier this year by the Institute of Policy Studies (IPS), entitled, Religion, Morality, and Conservatism in Singapore, showed that there have been changes in Singaporean society when it comes to issues concerning the rights of the LGBT community, especially among the youth.

The study seeks to document and track the evolving trends of views and behaviours towards social and moral issues, including opinions of the respondents toward homosexual sex and marriage. And while Singapore is still generally conservative, its young people are becoming more open to the rights of the LGBT community, which is seen by the following statistics.

  • 58.4 percent of respondents between the age of 18 and 25 said gay marriages were “not wrong at all” or “not wrong most of the time”. For respondents aged 65 and above, less than ten percent responded this way.
  • 34.9 percent of respondents with ages between 18-25 and 47.9 percent of 26 to 35-year-olds said that homosexual sex was “always wrong” or “almost always wrong.” Five years ago, when the survey was last taken, 6.4 percent of 18 to 25-year-olds and 72.2 percent of 26 to 35-year-olds responded this way.—Over 30 percent of 18 to 25-year-olds said that homosexual sex was “not wrong at all”. In 2013, that number had been 11.6 percent.

Taken as a whole, 26.9 of the respondent said that gay marriage was “not wrong at all” or “not wrong most of the time”./ TISG

Read related: Youth in Singapore more open to LGBT rights, though Singapore is still ‘fairly conservative’—IPS report


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