Public Opinion Polls

Where does the public really stand on women’s rights and proposals to reform the Gender Recognition Act? We list the most recent surveys:

British Social Attitudes, reported in the Herald on 21 September 2023
Full Results

64% describe themselves as not prejudiced at all against people who are transgender, a decline of 18 percentage points since 2019 (82%).

Just 30% think someone should be able to have the sex on their birth certificate altered if they want, down from 53% in 2019.

While women, younger people, the more educated and less religious express more liberal views towards people who are transgender, these views have declined across all demographic groups.

Redfield and Wilton Strategies, reported on 06 September 2023

The highest negative approval rating of -20% for gender reform.

The Times poll, conducted by Panelbase, reported on 01 April 2023

18% of Scots believe Yousaf should launch a legal challenge against the UK government’s decision to block the Gender Recognition Bill, 44% say he should abandon the bill completely, 24% think a compromise should be found with the UK government and 14% of those surveyed said they didn’t know.
Excluding undecideds, 51% thought the law, which would introduce a policy of self-identification and lowers the age at which a person can legally change their gender to 16, should be dropped altogether.

Wings Over Scotland poll, conducted by Panelbase, reported on 07 Mar 2023: “A cock and ball story”

Wings Over Scotland poll, conducted by Panelbase, reported on 14 Feb 2023: “Confirmation Bias for Beginners”
Full results

By well over 2 to 1, respondents felt that they were being let down by the people who are supposed to speak for them. (Excluding Don’t Knows the margin is just shy of 70/30, very similar to the margin by which people in polls oppose self-ID generally.)

Lord Ashcroft poll, reported in Holyrood on 13 Feb 2023
Full results

“Fewer than three in ten (29 per cent) respondents said they supported the [Gender Recognition Reform] bill, but more than half (54 per cent) said they opposed it. And while 33 per cent said the UK Government was “wrong” to have blocked the bill, 50 per cent said it was “right” or “within its rights” to do so.

At 64 per cent, those respondents most likely to lean towards voting Green at the next election were also most likely to say that they support the GRR bill and that the UK Government’s veto was wrong. Only 44 per cent of those most likely to back the SNP said the same. For Labour and the Lib Dems – parties which also supported the legislation and oppose Westminster’s intervention – the figures are 13 per cent and 14 per cent respectively.”

The Times poll, conducted by Panelbase, reported on 11 Feb 2023

The poll was conducted for The Sunday Times over the past week as a review for the Scottish Prison Service found that the process of admitting transgender people to prisons should be improved in the wake of the Isla Bryson case.

“Today’s poll found that, among those who expressed a view, 76 per cent of voters believe the Scottish government’s plans to change the law on gender recognition would pose a safety risk in women-only spaces, such as prisons, hospital wards and changing rooms while some 24 per cent disagreed. A total of 21 per cent said they didn’t know.”

The Times poll, reported on 11 Feb 2023

UnHerd Britain 2023, published on 10 Feb 2023
Full results

YouGov poll, reported in The Times on 05 Feb 2023

Support for the SNP, for Nicola Sturgeon and for Scottish independence has fallen sharply as the party’s crisis over transgender rights deepens.

The latest YouGov poll, of 1,088 voters in Scotland from January 23 to January 26, found that Sturgeon’s approval rating had slipped into negative territory, from +7 to -4, since October. In the space of a month, support for the SNP in the next Scottish parliament election had fallen from 50 per cent to 44 per cent in the constituency vote, and from 40 per cent to 36 per cent in the regional vote and from 43 per cent to 42 per cent for Westminster. The poll also showed a reversal on the independence question over past month, with support for secession down from 53 per cent to 47 per cent among those expressing a view — the lowest since last spring.

YouGov poll, reported in the Telegraph on 31 Jan 2023
Full results

The Times poll, reported on 28 Jan 2023

The Times poll, conducted by YouGov, reported on 21 Jan 2023

The Times poll, reported on 18 Jan 2023

The Times poll, reported on 07 Jan 2023

Wings Over Scotland/The Times poll, conducted by Panelbase, reported on 19 Dec 2022: “Why do SNP voters hate women?

The Times poll, conducted by Panelbase, reported on 17 Dec 2022

The Times poll, reported on 15 Dec 2022

The Times poll, reported on 26 Nov 2022

The Times poll, reported on 16 Oct 2022
Full results

British Social Attitudes Survey 39, reported in The Times, 22 Sep 2022
Full results I Chapter on Culture Wars
Main findings:

YouGov, May 2022
Full report I Data
Main findings:

Equalities, Human Rights and Civil Justice Committee, Scottish Parliament, reported 23 May 2022

Wings Over Scotland, conducted by Panelbase, reported on 02 May 2022: “Voting for people who hate you

BBC Scotland Gender Recognition Act Poll, conducted by Savanta ComRes, reported by the BBC 17 Feb 2022
Full Results I Data
Main findings: 57% would support making the process to acquire a gender recognition certificate easier but that support dropped when asked about specific proposals.

The Times poll, reported on 13 Feb 2021

For Women Scotland, conducted by Panelbase, reported in the Times, 18 Dec 2021

MurrayBlackburnMackenzie, conducted by Survation, Nov 2021
Report I Data

A high percentage of respondents agreeing that people should be free to express their transgender identity does not however translate into support for reforming the Gender Recognition Act based on self-declaration. The majority of people believe that a doctor’s approval should be needed for a person to change their sex in law. This includes a majority of those who agree the people should be freely able to express their transgender identity.

YouGov, Panelbase, reported in the Times, 27 Nov 2021

Scot Goes Pop, Panelbase, reported in the Times, 31 Oct 2021
Report I Data

Panelbase, Nov 2019