LGBTQI+ acceptance grows in Hungary despite anti-LGBTQI+ laws

A new poll has shown most Hungarians support that young people hear about sexual and gender minorities despite the country’s anti-LGBTQIA+ ruling party.

The representative poll – commissioned by Amnesty International Hungary and Háttér Society and conducted by polling agency Medián – found that 46% of the respondents personally know people in the LGBTQI community, and 73% reject the government’s false claim that gay and lesbian people abuse or harm children.

In May 2020, as the first of several legislative act curtailing the rights of LGBTQI, the Parliament banned legal gender recognition for trans and intersex people.

LGBTQIA+ rights activists in Hungary recently highlighted their opposition to the country’s new anti-gay laws by posing in front of a giant blow-up rainbow heart in front of the capital’s parliament building.

The new legislation, which came into effect in July, prohibits the display of content depicting homosexuality, gender fluidity or information about being transgender to minors. LGBTQIA+ organisations in the country have vowed to stage civil disobedience actions and say they have no intention changing any of their programs.

The survey found that the a clear majority of the Hungarian society (74.5%) believe that transgender people should be able to change their gender and name in their official documents. Marriage equality is supported by 59%, while 69% of respondents say same-gender couples can also be good parents. Two years ago, in 2019, same-sex marriage was supported by only 33%.

“Our research confirmed that Hungarian society is much more accepting than the government. The deceiving, hateful policies do not have social support, which is why it is important for everyone to stand up for LGBTQI people and not give in to hatred,” said Luca Dudits, executive board member of Háttér Society.

The survey included several questions on the topic of LGBTQIA+ education is schools, a topic that sparks heated debate in the European nation. The government’s view on LGBTQIA+ education is not in line with social attitudes on the issue, with 66% saying it is right for young people to hear about sexual minorities as part of the school curriculum, and 82% say the young person’s age and level of maturity should decide when and how they hear about the topic.

The overwhelming majority of Hungarians 83%, do not believe the that someone could become gay from hearing about the subject at school, as is being touted by opponents of LGBTQIA+ rights under Hungary’s Orban government.

It also turns out that 90% of Hungarians say that age-appropriate sex education should be provided in schools, and that it is not the government, but parents and teachers who should decide what is taught on this topic (86% agreed with this statement).

There is minimial social support for the government’s newest measure that enables that state to decide which experts and organizations can provide training on, for example, school bullying and abuse; 85% of respondents said teachers should be free to decide who they want in their classroom to assist in these subjects.

“It’s clearer than day that the majority doesn’t want the state to decide on school sex education or whether their child hears about sexual and gender minorities,” said Dávid Vig, director of Amnesty International Hungary.

“People think that these topics are important for young people to hear about, and they trust teachers and their decisions. The position of the majority is therefore clear: they do not want the unconstitutional homophobic and transphobic law.”

OIP Staff


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