29 September 2012, 1:58pm
Just 2.6 per cent of people questioned by the Office of National Statistics have said that they are either lesbian, gay or bisexual, leading the Christian Institute to question whether such a small populous should be given the right to marry.
Although charities such as Stonewall have long estimated the LGB population to be between six and ten per cent of the population, the findings of the Office of National Statistics survey were that 1.5 per cent of men say they are gay, 0.7 per cent of women say they are lesbian, and 0.4 per cent of people say they are bisexual.
The Christian Institute believe that the figures showed that the gay population is ‘tiny’, and therefore not worthy of being given equal rights to marry. Mike Judge of the organisation told the Daily Mail: “It is staggering that such a monumental change is being carried out on behalf of a tiny proportion of society.”
But Benjamin Cohen of Out4Marriage said: “Quite aside from the fact that many have questioned the accuracy and usefulness of the ONS’s surveys, even if the lesbian, gay and bisexual population was as low as is claimed, why should that therefore mean that LGBT people are entitled to less rights than heterosexual people?
He continued: “Jewish people make up less than half a per cent of the UK population. Yet as a Jew, I have the legal right to get married, for that marriage to be conducted by a Rabbi and recognised by the state, although obviously only currently to someone of the opposite sex. By the Christian Institute’s interpretation of population data, the Jewish population is presumably even more ‘tiny’, so presumably the Christian Institute believe that Jews should, like gay people, be denied the right to marry.”
Ben Summerskill of Stonewall criticised the Office of National Statistic’s research methods telling the Daily Mail: “People are not answering truthfully.
“There are genuinely good reasons for having accurate figures. For example, you do not need to have so many primary schools in Brighton as in Shrewsbury, because there are a lot of gay people in Brighton and, although some have children, they are likely to have fewer children. This is about public money.
“We reckon 6 per cent, the figure the Treasury has used for some time, is a sensible estimate.”
Despite protests, the official census does not include a question on sexuality.