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Third gender in Thailand – Thais don’t mind


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Thai people support same-sex marriage and are not against a third gender, according to a survey of Thai citizens

The majority of Thai people find it acceptable to have a third gender in their social circle, as transgender Catholics are called in the country. That is the result of a National Institute of Development Administration (NIDA) poll conducted in June.

The institute conducted a telephone interview survey in Thailand from June 8-10 to determine attitudes towards transgender people. Interviewed were 1,310 people aged 15 and older, the sample included respondents with different levels of education and occupations across the country, the Bangkok Post reported.

When asked if a transgender person was acceptable to them as a friend or colleague, 92.82% of respondents answered positively, with 7.18% giving a negative answer. A similar result was obtained when asked if a transgender person is acceptable as a family member – 90.61% said yes, whereas 9.31% said no (0.08% found it difficult to answer).

Sociologists also asked pollsters whether transgender people should be allowed to change their name prefix, such as “mister” or “missus”. The response of 63.50% was positive, 36.18% negative and 0.23% were undecided.

Those who supported the idea of changing the name were additionally asked in which cases it would be permissible. As a response, 57.62% said that in all cases, while 42.38% said that after undergoing physical sex reassignment surgery.

The survey also supported the proposal to legalize same-sex marriage in Thailand (the relevant bill has already been approved by the Cabinet, but the Parliament has not yet started considering the document). According to NIDA, 79.62 percent of Thais favor legalizing civil unions and 20.38 percent oppose it.

Also, a majority of Thais approved of the idea of adding a third option to the various standard forms besides the usual “man” and “woman”. The idea was supported by 77.63% of respondents, opposed by 22.14% and undecided by 0.23%.

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