- A new generation is coming out in China.
More than 15% of Chinese university students are LGBT+, according to a new survey.
The research asked 54,580 college students from 1,764 universities across China about their sexuality.
And 8.92% said they are bisexual, 4.58% gay, 1.22% pansexual, 0.6% asexual, and 0.94% another sexuality. Meanwhile just 77.28% are heterosexual and 6.46% are not sure.
It is a further indication that attitudes are shifting towards LGBT+ people in China, particularly among young people.
In particular, LGBT+ campaigners have welcomed the ‘tips’ given to students alongside the results of the study. They say (translated):
‘Sexual attraction is impacted by numerous factors, encompassing a spectrum of sexual orientation. This is a normal phenomenon.
‘Every individual’s social gender and their choice of intimate partner/relationship is unique, and every individual has the right to make their own life choices and to be respected.
‘Everyone needs to work hard to strive for a diverse, equal and accepting world.’
Chinese citizens back same-sex marriage
Attitudes seem to be shifting at an official level in China too.
Late last year, the country’s top legislative body allowed the public to make suggestions for an updated draft of China’s Civil Code.
Nearly 200,000 Chinese people sent feedback in just one month. And over 190,000 of them made the same proposal: legalize same-sex marriage.
By recognizing and publicizing the result, Chinese officials gave LGBT+ campaigners hope they are now more sympathetic to marriage equality. Officials in the past have opposed same-sex marriage.
Moreover, in December, Chinese news site ifeng.com polled 10million people. It found 66% of the respondents favored legalizing same-sex marriage.
Meanwhile the case of a Chinese mom fighting for access to the children she had with a previous female partner has both raised the importance of marriage rights and public sympathy.
The new survey results come as Shanghai starts the build up to its annual Shanghai Pride festival in June.
China has lifted lockdown measures and the organizers hope the festival will go ahead more-or-less as planned.
The 2019 to 2020 National College Student Sexual and Reproductive Health Survey Report gathered data between November 2019 and February 2020.
The survey was a collaboration between the China Family Planning Association, the China Youth Network, and the Public Health Research Center of Tsinghua University.