LGBT+ community comes out for a People’s Vote – YouGov poll - People's Vote

LGBT+ community comes out for a People’s Vote – YouGov poll

An overwhelming majority of LGBT+ people want a People’s Vote on Brexit – and would vote to remain in the EU, according to a new poll by YouGov, which coincides with the launch this weekend of a new campaign group LGBT+ for a People’s Vote.

The exclusive YouGov poll of almost 1,500 lesbian, gay and bisexual people commissioned by People’s Vote found that 72 per cent of people in the LGBT+ community support a public vote on Brexit – with just 28 per cent opposed (excluding Don’t Knows). An overwhelming 70 per cent of LGBT+ people in this country would vote to remain in the UK in a new referendum – up from the 60 per cent of LGBT+ people who voted remain at the referendum in 2016 (excluding those who did not vote and don’t know).

The poll also finds:

  • 77 per cent of the LGBT+ community think Brexit will fundamentally impact their lives.
  • 78 per cent of the LGBT+ community think promises made by Brexit-supporting politicians will be broken.
  • 84 per cent of the LGBT+ community agree that the process so far of leaving the EU has been a mess.
  • Meanwhile, just 13 per cent of the LGBT+ community expect Britain to get a good deal with the EU.

The findings are published alongside a letter to the Prime Minister signed by 164 LGBT+ activists – including the broadcaster, journalist and trans advocate Paris Lees, the actor and Stonewall Founding Chair Lord Cashman and YouTube vlogger Jake Edwards - demanding a People’s Vote on the outcome of Brexit negotiations.

LGBT+ for a People’s Vote will be launched this Saturday evening with Party for a People’s Vote - nine events taking place in prominent LGBT+ venues across 4 cities in the UK, with the flagship event being hosted at G-A-Y London.

The launch will highlight the instrumental role the European Union has had in promoting LGBT+ rights in the UK, ensuring equal treatment in the workplace, recognising that trans discrimination is gender discrimination and protecting pensions.

LGBT+ for a People’s Vote has charted a rise in hate crimes and extremist politics – including homophobia, biphobia and, particularly, transphobia – since the 2016 referendum. This may be an unintended consequence of Brexit. Nevertheless, it is, in part at least, a consequence of it. Leaving the EU will also disrupt access to HIV medications, PrEP and the latest medical advances.

Peter Tatchell, Director, Peter Tatchell Foundation, said:

“Brexit will fracture our successful collaboration with LGBT+ groups and governments across the EU, which has done so much to advance equality for our communities throughout the continent. 

“The UK needs to remain in the EU to secure and safeguard the full protections guaranteed to sexual and gender minorities under the EU Charter of fundamental rights and freedoms. 

“I urge LGBTs to support the campaign for a People’s Vote and to march in the LGBT+ bloc in the London mass demonstration on 20 October.” 

Helen Belcher, Chair of LGBT Consortium, said:

"Trans people won two key rights - the right not to be discriminated against at work and the right of gender recognition - from the Court of Justice of the European Union. The human rights consequences as well as the economic and reputational consequences of leaving the EU are why I’m campaigning for a People’s Vote once we know the terms of any deal.”

Tris Reid-Smith, Editor-in-Chief, Gay Star News, said:

"Brexit is dangerous for the LGBTI community. It would do more than just harm LGBTI rights of course. If we actually leave the EU – ‘Chequers’ deal, bad deal or no deal – people will lose their jobs, the NHS will suffer and we may face shortages of everything from HIV medication to food.

"Nobody in the UK voted for this mess. Nobody voted for Chequers. No LGBTI person voted to allow the government to remove important protections on our rights.

"The loudest Brexiteers have the worst voting records on LGBTI issues. The referendum has handed political power to homophobes, biphobes and transphobes. I am scared what they will do next if they triumph in pushing us to a hard Brexit.

"But we can avert disaster. A People’s Vote provides a democratic way for UK citizens to say what they want the final outcome to be – including remaining in the EU."



Notes to editors:

  1. All figures, unless otherwise stated, are from YouGov Plc.  Total sample size was 18,772 adults – including 1,433 lesbian, gay and bisexual voters. Fieldwork was undertaken between 31st July - 20th August 2018.  The survey was carried out online. The figures have been weighted and are representative of all GB adults (aged 18+). The full fieldwork can be found here:


  1. The full text of the letter signed by 164 activists is below:


Dear Prime Minister,

We are writing as a broad group of people from the UK LGBT+ community to call for a People’s Vote on the final outcome of the Brexit negotiations.

Naturally, no one person, or group, can represent all the nuanced opinions of an entire community as diverse and widespread as ours. We do not pretend to.

However, we obviously have detailed ongoing conversations with the community we serve. Through this we have identified a clear unease among many with the proposals for leaving the EU – including your own Chequers proposals, and others’ ideas for a ‘hard’, ‘no-deal’ or ‘blind’ Brexit.

Independent polling endorses this qualitative evidence. YouGov research shows 60% of our community voted to remain in 2016, and 70% wish to remain in the EU today. What is more, 72% of LGBT+ people want a People’s Vote.

Earlier this year the publication of an LGBT+ Brexit Impact Assessment, authored by leading human rights lawyers, indicated a number of areas in which our community will be gravely affected by the current Brexit proposals. You have engineered Brexit to remove the constitutional protections on LGBT+ rights that the EU currently offers, without replacing those guarantees. That makes it far easier for anti-LGBT+ politicians to chip away or remove our rights in future, even if your current government does not intend to. And it is the stated aim of leading Brexiteers to do so.

By contrast, the European Union has been instrumental in promoting LGBT+ rights. This has included ensuring our equal treatment in the workplace, recognising that trans discrimination is gender discrimination and protecting our pensions.

We have charted a rise in hate crimes and extremist politics – including homophobia, biphobia and, particularly, transphobia – since the 2016 referendum. This may be an unintended consequence of Brexit. Nevertheless, it is, in part at least, a consequence of it.

Many of those who are loudest in their promotion of Brexit are not friends of the LGBT+ community. They have a history of voting against our rights. This only adds to the deep unease many LGBT+ people have about the future of our country, should we continue down our current path.

These fears continue to grow as further Brexit-related issues become clear. We now know leaving the EU will disrupt our access to HIV medications, PrEP and the latest medical advances.

This is, of course, only one subset of the complex set of issues the UK faces as it charts its future. Certainly, the evidence suggests that our community is at least as concerned about the impact on the NHS, our economy and our future place in the world as it is about LGBT+ specific issues. The People’s Vote campaign has already outlined those issues to you – and, indeed, expressed why a vote on the outcome of your negotiations with the EU is in the interests of the UK and of democracy.

However, we believe there is an onus on the government to pay special attention to the needs of vulnerable and minority communities in all cases, and in particular when making long-term constitutional change.

We hope, therefore, that you will decide to offer the UK a People’s Vote, now all the facts are known. We believe such a vote is in the clear interests of our country and our community.




Tris Reid-Smith - Editor-in-Chief/ Co-Founder, Gay Star News. Chair, LGBT+ for a People's Vote.

Scott Nunn - Co-Founder, Gay Star News and Digital Pride

Richard Angell - Director, Progress – Labour’s centre-left movement

Liz Barker - Baroness, House of Lords

Matt Beard - Executive Director, All Out

Ben Bradshaw - MP for Exeter

Chris Bryant - MP for Rhondda

Gary Buxton MBE - Youth Advocate

Ivor Caplin - Former Defence Minister and Chair Jewish Labour Movement

Michael Cashman - Lord Cashman, CBE. Labour LGBT Global envoy (2014-16). Founding chair Stonewall.

Seb Dance MEP - Member of the European Parliament for London

Damien Egan - Mayor of Lewisham

James Frost - Publisher, Gay Times

Sarah Garrett MBE - CEO, British LGBT Awards

Tom Guy - Founder, National Student Pride. Chair, Architecture LGBT+.

Matthew Hodson - Executive Director, NAM (aidsmap)

David Hudson - Editor, Gay Star News

Stu Hosker - Director of Marketing and Brand, Gay Star News

Jason Jones - Human Rights Defender

Peter Kyle - MP for Hove and Portslade

Paris Lees - Broadcaster, journalist and trans advocate

Jennie Rigg - Chair LGBT+ Lib Dems

Linda Riley - Publisher, DIVA Magazine

Wes Streeting - MP for Ilford North

Peter Tatchell - Director, Peter Tatchell Foundation

Steve Taylor - Director, European Pride Organisers Association

Robbie Young - Co-Chair, LGBT Labour

David Young - Publishing Manager, Gay Star News

Rafael Abreu - Advocate

Morgana Aiyer - LGBT ally, co-lead for Accenture

Francesca Allen - Graphic designer

Alisha Anderson - Advocate

Carl Austin-Behan - LGBT Advisor to The Mayor of Greater Manchester

Damian Barr - Writer and Salonnière

Marianna Baxter - Local Councillor and Secretary of Cornwall Lib Dems

Daniel Beeson - Head of Engagement, Gay Star News

Helen Belcher - Trustee and Founder, Trans Media Watch; Chair, LGBT Consortium; Member, Stonewall Trans Advisory Group; Secretary, Parliamentary Forum on Gender Identity; Parliamentary Candidate for Chippenham Liberal Democrats

Jeff Blakely - Web developer

Rosa Bosch - Advocate

Matthew Boyles - Founder, Fitter Confident You

Kathryn Breitner - Consultant, Campaigner

Simon Brooksbank - Co-Chair, Planning Out

Andrew Brown - Secretary, LGBT+ Liberal Democrats

Robert Brown - Activist, Founder of LGBT Youth Group in Scotland, Founder of Absolute Freedom Group, Former Trustee of Broken Relations ainbow UK

Kay Browning - Advocate

Darren Burn - Managing Director, /

Alison Camps - Advocate

Thomas Capon - Travel Editor, Gay Star News

David Chalmers - Chair of North Devon Sunrise

Zoë Chowney - Co-chair, GWN

Matt Clare - Local Councillor, Eltham South (Conservative)

Ben Collins - Sexual Health Activist

Marcus Connolly - National Student Pride Committee

Jonathan Cooper - Barrister, Doughty Street Chambers

Darren Cooper - Advocate

Kasia Czybir - Doula / Reiki Practitioner

Rohit Dasgupta - Councillor, London Borough of Newham/Lecturer, Loughborough University

Dominic Davies - CEO, Pink Therapy

Christel Dee - Digital Creative, Writer and Presenter

Matilda Deterding - Creative Partnerships Manager, Gay Star News

Jason Domino - Director, The Domino Foundation CIC

Craig Donachy - Laing O'Rourke Pride Chair and Building Equality Exec Committee Member

Peter Dunne - Lecturer in Law

Moira Dustin - SOGICA project

Jacob Edward - Podcast Host, Activist

Jake Edwards - Transgender YouTuber

Kelsey Ellison - YouTuber

Greg Falley - Advocate

Jenny Fallover - Community organiser

Nuno Ferreira - Professor of Law, University of Sussex

John Finnegan - Liberal Democrats Candidate in Salmestone Ward in next May Local Elections

Matt Frisch - Advocate

Ian Gee - Business consultant

Paisley Gilmour - Journalist

Paul Gorczynski - Lecturer

Jake Graf - Writer and director

Liz Grant OBE - Inclusive workplaces consultant. OBE for services for LGBT equality in the workplace

Jordan Gray - Patron of Educate and Celebrate, entertainer and journalist

Sophie Griffiths - Editor, Travel Trade Gazette and founder of TTG LGBT

Nicola Hannan - Media professional

Dr Adrian Harrop - GP Registrar, Health Education North East

Tom Hayes - Editor,

Nicola Heath - Advocate

Jo Hennessey - Diversity Champion, Construction Industry

Gustavo Hernandez - Artist and Designer

Jake Hook - Editor-in-Chief, TheGayUK

Natacha Horn - Director

Ian Howley - HERO (Health Equality and Rights Organisation)

Adrian Hyyrylainen-Trett - Vice President of LGBT+ Lib Dem’s

Alex Ingram - Student Pride Volunteer and CEO Rendezvous Events

Ollie James-Parr - Festival Director, National Student Pride

Rico Johnson-Sinclair - Campaign Manager, Birmingham LGBT

Mike Kear - Photographer and advocate

Natacha Kennedy - Lecturer, Goldsmiths College London

Mallory Khalifa - Managing Director of Animation company

Charlie Kiss - Trans advocate. Author of ‘A New Man’

Thain Kleinhentz - Health Adviser

Stephan Kyriacou - Trans and bisexual writer and YouTuber

Philip Lawrence - Advocate

Mark Lewis - Advocate

Stephanie Lloyd - Deputy Director, Progress

Joel Love - Vicar of Rochester St Peter with St Margaret

Carrie Lyell - Editor, DIVA magazine

Revd Jide Macaulay - Founder and CEO, House Of Rainbow CIC

Boom Macleod - Director, British LGBT Awards

Francesca Maga - Advocate

Chris Maines - Chair, London Liberal Democrats

Hilton Marlton - Advocate

Charlie-Ann Mathers - Engagement Officer, Digital Pride

Thomas McGregor - Advocate

Calum McSwiggan - Advocate

Tatiana Meakin - LOR Pride Committee Member

Alan Mercel-Sanca - Lead officer of the LGB&T Dorset Equality Network

Zach Meyers - Lawyer

Angela Millar - Advocate

Carina Miller - Advocate

Joe Morgan - Journalist

Gary B Morris - Advocate

Maureen Murphy - Inbound Controller Supply Chain

Daniel Murtha - Advocate

Anwen Muston - Advocate

Alejandra Nagia - Organiser at LGBT+ group for a large financial institution

Stuart Nunn - SEO Consultant, Gay Star News

Keren Oser - Head of Finance

Maria Patsalos - Lawyer

Heather Peace - Actor, musician and LGBT Activist

Scott Pearson - Advocate

Sara Pendlebury - Psychotherapist

Joanna Peters - LGBTQ+ creator

Heather Peto - Transgender Officer, LGBT Labour

Olly Pike - Creator of LGBT+ Educational Resource 'Pop'n'Olly'

Shannon Power - Journalist

Jae Price - LGBTQIA+ activist and trans woman

Alex Protopapa - Account Manager, Gay Star News

Aluce Quimby - Primary school teacher and advocate

Karen Rayment - Advocate

Mark Reading - Lawyer

Juno Roche - Writer and campaigner

Jose Rodriguez - Lecturer

Mark Rounding - Charity Chief Executive

Amanda Salt - Director

Suki Sandhu - Founder & CEO, Audeliss & INvolve

Edwin Sesange - Director, African Equality Foundation

Lois Shearing - Founder of the Bi Survivors Network and Do Better Bi Us campaign

Angella-Dee Sherriffe - Advocate

Guy Shipton - Advocate

Krzysztof Sieledczyk - Project Manager at a Construction Company

Adam Smith - Advocate

Justine Smithies - Trans Activist & Marine Electronics Engineer

Sabina Socoli - CEO, Karavan Blockchain

Ben Spector - CEO of SpecTronics UK

Octavian Starr - Diversity and Training Consultant

Nicholas Stellmacher - Advocate

Dom Stewart - Vauxhall CLP Vice-Chair and Campaign Officer/ Secretary of Westminster Amnesty Branch

Jamie Tabberer - Entertainment Editor, Gay Star News

Allan Taylor - Lecturer

Daniel Tills - Advocate

Gerald Vernon-Jackson CBE - Leader, Portsmouth City Council

Joe Vinson - Co-Chair, LGBT Labour London and South East

Samuel Wakefield - Advocate

Steve Wardlaw - Chairman, Emerald Life

Jamie Wareham - Video and Digital Pride Production Manager, Gay Star News

Linda Wilkinson FIBMS MPhil (UCL) - Writer and activist

Jen Yockney MBE - Editor, Bi Community News


  1. LGBT+ for a People’s Vote will be launched formally on Saturday night with Party for a People’s Vote – a series of nine events taking place across four cities in the UK, with the flagship event being hosted at G-A-Y London.