A growing share of American adults say they know someone who is transgender or who uses gender-neutral pronouns, according to a new survey from the Pew Research Center.
According to the study, which was released on Tuesday, 42% of Americans said they knew a transgender person, up five percentage points from 2017. About a quarter of Americans surveyed also said they knew someone who uses neutral pronouns. , such as like “they / them”, which has increased by eight percentage points since the last survey in 2018, according to the results.
Figures on how comfortable people are using gender-neutral pronouns are “virtually unchanged,” the study added. Half of Americans say they feel very or somewhat comfortable using gender neutral pronouns, while 48% say they feel very or somewhat uncomfortable using them.
The findings come from the American Trends Panel (ATP) at the Pew Research Center, where they interviewed more than 10,000 American adults from June 14 to 27.
“I think these topics are part of the national debate,” said Rachel Minkin, research associate at the Pew Research Center and co-author of the analysis. “We are looking at how public opinion is changing or not changing, and we have seen that some things have changed, certainly increasing among those who personally know someone who is transgender or who uses neutral pronouns, and some things haven’t. not .”
The study found that younger generations are more likely to know transgender people. For example, 53% of people aged 18 to 29 reported knowing a transgender person, the highest percentage of any other age group, compared with only 32% of people 65 and over.
Although a growing share of all adults – regardless of their background – reported knowing someone who is transgender or uses gender-neutral pronouns, young adults, Democrats and those with more education were more likely to report knowing someone, according to the report.
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“We haven’t seen any big changes in public opinion on comfort or discomfort using neutral pronouns and opinions on whether gender is determined by the sex assigned at birth or s. it may be different from the sex assigned at birth, but there is certainly a range of opinions on these issues looking at age and partisanship, ”Minkin said.
Meanwhile, a growing share of Americans said they knew someone using neutral pronouns. According to the study, 46% of people aged 18 to 29 said they knew someone using pronouns, an increase of 14 percentage points since 2018.
In addition, 56% of the majority of adults under 30said a person’s sex may differ from the sex assigned at birth, the study found. Less than about 40% of people aged 30 and over made the same claim, the study added.
The Pew Research Center study comes shortly after the Trevor Project released a study that found that about 1 in 4 young LGBTQ people identify as non-binary, or someone who does not identify with the traditional gender dichotomy.
“Non-binary” refers to someone who does not identify only as a man or a woman, that is, the traditional gender binary, according to the Human Rights Campaign. They could identify as both male and female, between the two genders, or not belonging to any gender category. GLAAD offers a similar definition and recommends calling a non-binary person only if they claim that identity themselves.
“Young people use a variety of languages to describe nuances of their gender identity outside of gender binary construction,” Jonah DeChants, researcher for The Trevor Project, said in a press release.
“These data highlight that while there is certainly an overlap, young people understand ‘transgender’ and ‘non-binary’ as distinct identity terms – and you cannot assume their identity simply on the basis of the pronouns that they are. ‘they use.”
Contribution: David Oliver, USA TODAY