Advocates have welcomed a new poll showing Australians support marriage equality, support a parliamentary free vote on the issue and are concerned a plebiscite may result in anti-gay hate speech and abuse.
The Essential poll, released today, also shows the public is strongly against funding for the ‘yes’ and ‘no’ cases if a plebiscite is held.
Spokesperson for LGBTI advocacy group, just.equal, Ivan Hinton-Teoh, said,
“This poll shows Australians back marriage equality, support a free vote on the issue and are concerned about a plebiscite.”
“We will use this poll to lobby Coalition members to push for a free vote and to lobby Labor to finally close the door on a plebiscite.”
According to the Essential poll, 60% of Australians support marriage equality, with majority support across the supporters of all parties, including the Coalition.
53% of Australians support a free vote in Parliament should a plebiscite be blocked, with only 29% against. There is majority support for a free vote across all parties.
48% are concerned about hate campaigns during a plebiscite compared to 39% against.
A whopping 68% reject the Government’s proposal for public funding for the respective sides.
Mr Hinton-Teoh said many LGBTI people will take heart that more Australians than not share their concerns about hate campaigns.
“As Malcolm Turnbull says, a majority of Australians are sensible, fair-minded people. It is precisely these qualities that lead us to share a deep concern with a plebiscite.”