Press Release: Under 18s should not be able to self-define their gender, new poll finds

Oct 18, 2018

  • One in three support over 18s self-defining their race
  • Opinion evenly split on transgender individuals taking part in sports competitions
  • One in five back over 18s being able to define their age
  • Ten per cent support those who wish to define as a non-human species
  • Just five per cent would be pleased if their child wanted to change their gender
  • Young people more likely to support self-defining gender, race and age than older generations

Under 18s should not be able to self-define their gender, according to a major new poll for C4M.

The survey of over 2,000 members of the public found that a majority of those surveyed (51 per cent) believe that young people (under 18) should not be able to self-define their gender, while just one in five (20 per cent) thought they should.

The poll by ComRes found a less clear picture for over 18s, with four in ten (44 per cent) supporting the right of adults to self-define their gender compared to three in ten (29 per cent) who did not.

Colin Hart, the Chairman of the Coalition for Marriage, commented: “These results show that the public is deeply concerned at the Government’s obsession with pushing transgenderism on all. There is after all nothing progressive with children who are so ashamed of their bodies that they think they must change gender, something that has risen at an alarming rate in recent years.”

Mr Hart was referring to the news that the Equalities Minister Penny Mordaunt has ordered an inquiry into why there has been a more than 4,000 per cent increase in the number of girls seeking support from “transitioning” services in the last decade.

Asked “to what extent would you support or oppose each of the following? Permitting transgender individuals to take part in sports competitions under their new gender identity?”, the survey found opinion evenly split between agree (35 per cent), disagree (34 per cent) and don’t know (31 per cent).

Worryingly the poll found significant support for those who want to self-define their race (32 per cent), their age (19 per cent) and even their species (ten per cent). Among young people, these figures were higher in every category. 34 per cent of 18-24 year olds backed the right to choose your race, 23 per cent their age and 18 per cent their species.

The poll is being released as the Government’s consultation on reforming the Gender Recognition Act closes tomorrow Friday 19th.

It found just one in 20 (five per cent) would be pleased if their child/children wanted to officially change their gender, while four in ten (42 per cent) would not.

Surprisingly perhaps, 40 per cent said it would make no difference to them – and 38 per cent said it would make no difference if their child/children underwent medical treatment, including surgery, to change gender.

Mr Hart continued: “This poll shows conclusively that the public remain highly sceptical about the direction of Government policy and want children to be protected from the irreversible treatments such as suppressing puberty with powerful hormones or the removal of genitals.

“It also shows that there is concern about the fairness of transgender individuals competing in sporting competitions if they have what many would see as an unfair advantage because of the bodies they were born with. This is an echo of the debate raging in the US about young men who transition to women and compete in college wrestling.”

He concluded: “Interestingly, this poll strongly indicates that among young people race, gender, age and species are increasingly becoming fluid categories that can be changed at will.”

For media enquiries, please contact the C4M press office on 0785 286 6096.


Notes to Editors:

The Coalition for Marriage is an umbrella group of individuals and organisations in the UK that support traditional marriage and opposed its redefinition. Launched in 2012, the Coalition has worked to protect freedom of conscience on marriage for its supporters.


ComRes interviewed 2,002 British adults aged 18+ online between 19th and 20th September 2018. ComRes is a member of the British Polling Council and abides by its rules. Download the tables