83% of Kentuckians support statewide Fairness protections — A nearly 20-point gain in support since 2004
Just over 50 years ago, Kentucky became the civil rights leader in the South when it passed the 1960 Human Rights Act.
Since then, cities like Lexington, Louisville, and Covington have all worked tirelessly to honor this legacy by enacting fairness ordinances – laws that ensure everyone in our commonwealth has equal protection.
Today, we are pleased to announce that a statewide survey commissioned by the Fairness Coalition shows that Kentuckians continue to believe that everyone should be afforded the opportunity to earn a living, put a roof over their heads, and have dinner at their favorite restaurant without being turned away just because someone doesn’t like who they are.
83% of registered Kentucky voters agree that gay and transgender people should be protected from discrimination in the workplace, in housing, and in restaurants or other forms of public accommodation.
"The survey results confirm what we hear in talking to our neighbors throughout the state — Kentuckians want to be fair but many have no idea that employers can legally fire people for being gay or transgender or deny them housing or service in a restaurant," noted Michael Aldridge, Executive Director of the American Civil Liberties Union of Kentucky.
Public opinion has come a long way since the last available data in 2004, when only 65% of voters supported these same non-discrimination protections. And while providing the same legal protections for gay couples as straight couples lags in the polls — currently 70% support compared to 63% in 2004 — Kentuckians believe in fairness for hardworking gay and transgender employees who simply want to earn a living and provide for their families, just like everybody else.
The release of the survey results coincides with the kickoff of a public education advertising campaign.
"The vast majority of Kentuckians across all demographics express support for fairness and we want them to realize they aren’t alone – their friends and families are right there with them, but perhaps they just haven’t vocalized that yet," said Chris Hartman, Director of the Fairness Campaign.
About the Survey
The Fairness Coalition consists of five organizations working for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender equality in Kentucky. The member organizations are the ACLU of Kentucky, Fairness Campaign, Kentucky Commission on Human Rights, Kentucky Fairness Alliance, and Lexington Fairness.
Support for the survey and development of an educational advertising campaign was provided by Tides Foundation’s State Equality Fund, a philanthropic partnership that includes the Evelyn and Walter Haas, Jr Fund, the Gill Foundation, an anonymous donor, the Arcus Foundation and the Open Society Institute.
The Kentucky Statewide Fairness Coalition survey was conducted by The Schapiro Group, Inc. of Atlanta, Georgia in November and December 2010. A total of 600 Kentuckians who are registered voters were interviewed by telephone. The sample was randomly selected from voter registration lists and is weighted to represent the state’s population both geographically and demographically.
Click here to view the survey results (PDF).