Only 2 percent of the British public think “the debate about transgender people” is one of the most important issues facing the country, according to a recent survey.
Based on polling of more than 5,000 people and 20 focus groups, the report by the think-tank, More in Common, finds that the divisive debate playing out in Westminster and social media is out of sync with the public’s approach to the issue.
Instead of angry differences of opinion and Twitter pile-ons, the reports’ authors say the public want a ‘live and let live’ approach to trans people and case-by-case solutions, not blanket policies. Most are aware of the issues involved, a quarter know someone who is transgender, and for most the starting points are compassion and common sense.
Among the findings, the report said only 31% of British people think children should be taught about trans issues in primary school. However, among “progressive activists” that figure rose to 61%.
Most respondents (57 per cent) think that biological males who identify as trans women should not be allowed to compete in women-only sporting events (with 19 per cent who think they should be allowed). Focus groups found that the public see this as an issue of a level-playing field and the physical advantages that men have in some sports, but also looked for opportunities for trans people to compete in sports.