The first ever report into the opinions, attitudes and behaviour toward the LGBT population in Cambodia was carried out by Kantar TNS in 2015. It revealed that straight respondents were aware of the discrimination towards Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender (LGBT) people and rated it as the top problem facing this group.
Key findings from the 2015 research have been used by the only LGBT non-profit organisation in Cambodia, Rainbow Community Kampuchea (RoCK), for the organization’s strategic planning and education programmes.
In 2017, Kantar TNS conducted a follow-up study with people who had not participated in RoCK’s workshops. It uncovered the changing state of LGBT issues in the country and showed that the number of LGBT opponents in Cambodia was rising – from 49% in 2015, to 51% in 2017. In addition, supporters’ backing for same-sex marriage dropped from 79% in 2015 to 69% in 2017. Strikingly, the number of opponents who would reject their LGBT child increased from 43% in 2015 to 66% in 2017.
Evidence from the follow-up study indicates that the living environment for LGBT in Cambodia has not improved. Cambodia needs an intervention to improve the living conditions for LGBT people by transforming LGBT opponents, especially extreme opponents, into allies. In this report we classify the main opponents and outline steps to develop a more positive environment for the LGBT community.