A comprehensive study by the Pew Research Center has highlighted the stark global contrasts in acceptance of same-sex marriage. The extensive survey, now including data from 32 countries, reveals a wide range of public opinion on this issue.

In Western Europe, support for same-sex marriage is notably high, with countries like Sweden (92% support), the Netherlands, Spain, France, and Germany showing strong acceptance. These nations, where same-sex marriage is legally recognised, contrast sharply with Nigeria, where only 2% support it.

In the United Kingdom, 74% of adults favour same-sex marriage. This support persists despite fluctuating political stances on LGBTQ+ issues, such as the conversion therapy ban and a rise in anti-LGBTQ+ hate crimes. Italy, despite recent governmental restrictions on same-sex parenting and a surrogacy ban for same-sex couples, sees 73% support for same-sex marriage.


Conversely, Eastern European countries like Poland and Hungary exhibit lower support levels, with 41% and 31%, respectively. Poland’s LGBTQ+ community recently saw a glimmer of hope with the conservative Law and Justice party’s loss of majority, while Hungary’s right-wing government continues its crackdown on LGBTQ+ rights.

In the United States, amidst a year marked by anti-LGBTQ+ legislative activities, 63% support same-sex marriage. The study indicates a significant divide between liberals (82% support) and conservatives (44%).

In the Asia-Pacific region, Australia and Japan lead in support, with 75% and 70%, respectively favouring legal same-sex marriage. While Japan has taken steps towards LGBTQ+ understanding and non-discrimination, its hesitation to legally recognize same-sex marriage remains. Thailand, where 60% support same-sex marriage, is moving towards legal recognition with the Marriage Equality Bill set for parliamentary debate.

South Africa stands as the sole African nation with legalized same-sex marriage since 2006, yet 59% of its population opposes it. In Africa, Kenya and Nigeria are among the least supportive, with Kenya considering a bill that could severely penalize the LGBTQ+ community.

The study underscores that education level, religious beliefs, and income play significant roles in shaping attitudes towards same-sex marriage. Additionally, the global decline in democracy and rise in authoritarianism are linked to deteriorating LGBTQ+ rights and increased anti-LGBTQ+ rhetoric.