1 in 3 Scots men say same-sex relationships are wrong, finds poll

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Almost one in three Scots men say it is wrong for people to have same-sex relationships, new research shows.

And one in ten people would not accept people of a different religion marrying a relative or being elected their MSP, a poll conducted for Humanist Society Scotland has found.

The findings have raised concerns of a 'hidden intolerance' among a significant majority of Scots. Picture: Getty

The findings have raised concerns of a 'hidden intolerance' among a significant majority of Scots. Picture: Getty

But an overwhelming majority (82 per cent) say people of different faiths, beliefs and of no religion should have equal rights

READ MORE: Scotland’s schools to be world’s first to offer LGBTI inclusive education

The findings have prompted concerns of a “hidden intolerance” among a significant majority of Scots.

READ MORE: Church of Scotland votes to draft same-sex marriage legislation

Three-quarters of people are concerned about some religious people being too “intolerant” of others, while 86 per cent of Scots say it is possible to live a good ethical life without being religious.

Gordon Macrae of the Humanist Society Scotland said: “Overall this research paints Scotland as a country accepting of different religious or non-religious outlooks.

“However there is some findings of concern, for example around one in ten people would not accept an individual being their MSP if their religion/belief was different.

“There has been unacceptable incidents in the past of people attempting to use religious positions to advocate against voting for candidates in an election. Thankfully this is shown to be out of touch with the overwhelming majority of people in the country.”

A spokesman for the Church of Scotland said: “It is good to see that the report commissioned by Humanist Society Scotland highlights that Scotland is largely a tolerant and inclusive society. However, it also shows that more work remains to be done.”

It found 9 per cent of people would not accept someone who is of a different religious or non-religious outlook to themselves being elected their MSP, although 80 per cent would. And 86 per cent of respondents said they believed it was possible to live a good ethical life without being religious.

One in five adults said it was wrong for people of the same sex to have sexual relationships and this rises to one in three among men.

Colin Macfarlane, director of Stonewall Scotland, said the findings confirm previous research conducted by the campaign group.

“We know that in Scotland one in five people have experienced a hate crime in the last year because of their sexual orientation or gender identity,” he said. “We know that only half of lesbian, gay, bi and trans people feel comfortable being open about their sexual orientation or gender identity with their family and two in five trans people avoid certain streets because they don’t feel safe.

“Scotland has changed for the better over the course of the last 30 years but there is much more to be done before everyone is accepted without exception.” 
The poll of 1,003 Scots was conducted by Survation.