Just over half of gay and lesbian Aussies say they trust police, ABS finds

victoria police midsumma pride march gay lesbian bisexual trust police australian bureau of statistics
Victoria Police march in Melbourne's Midsumma Pride March.

The Australian Bureau of Statistics has released new data showing gay, lesbian and bisexual Australians trust police, the justice system and the healthcare system less than straight folk.

The ABS spent four months last year conducting their General Social Survey for 2020. From June to September, they surveyed a range of Australians on a variety of topics during the COVID-19 pandemic. The ABS released the results this week.

According to the new data, the majority of straight Aussies (82%) agreed with the statement that police can be trusted. However just 56% of the gay, lesbian and bisexual respondents said the same.

And 78% of straight people said they could trust the healthcare system. However among the lesbian, gay and bi respondents, that figure was lower at 68%.

More straight Aussies (65%) also said they could trust the justice system. However just 41% of lesbian, gay and bisexual respondents said the same.

On crime and safety, 8.6% of gay, lesbian and bisexual people reported “experiencing physical or threatened assault” in the last 12 months. That’s more than double the number of their heterosexual peers (4%).

“People who described themselves as gay, lesbian or bisexual were more likely to report experiencing discrimination than people who described themselves as heterosexual (30% compared to 13%),” the ABS also explained.

In response to the statement “most people can be trusted,” only 51% of gay, lesbian and bisexual Aussies agreed. This was compared to 63% of heterosexual respondents.

In the survey, the ABS asked respondents to give their sexual orientation. However the survey results don’t differentiate the experiences of cisgender people and transgender and gender diverse folk.

Less face-to-face contact during COVID-19 pandemic

Australians also reported less face-to-face contact with family or friends outside their household in 2020, a year of COVID-19 lockdowns and various social restrictions.

Two in five (42%) had face to face contact with family or friends living outside their household at least once a week in 2020. This was less than the three in five (68%) in 2019.

For the latest lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex and queer (LGBTIQ) news in Australia, visit qnews.com.au. Check out our latest magazines or find us on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.

Jordan Hirst
Jordan Hirst

Jordan Hirst is an experienced journalist and content creator with a career spanning over a decade at QNews. Since 2012, the Brisbane local has covered an enormous range of topics and subjects in-depth affecting the LGBTIQA+ community, both in Australia and overseas. Today, the Brisbane-based journalist covers everything from current affairs, politics and health to sport and entertainment.

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