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MEDIA RELEASE

15 November 2017

Australia supports changing the law to allow same-sex couples to marry

All states and territories recorded a majority Yes response. Of the 150 Federal Electoral Divisions, 133 recorded a majority Yes response, and 17 Federal Electoral Divisions recorded a majority No response.

12,727,920 million people participated in the voluntary survey – representing 79.5 per cent of the more than 16 million eligible Australians.

Releasing the results, Australian Statistician, David W. Kalisch, said the participation rate was high for a voluntary survey.

“This high response rate far exceeds expectations and compares extremely favourably with other voluntary exercises conducted around the world thanks to the strong interest and engagement of eligible Australians in this topic,” he said.

The ABS had rigorous methods to avoid fraud, manage risks and protect the integrity and privacy of all responses.

“Independent assurers checked our approach and actions along the way, and external observers reviewed our coding processes,” he said.

“This combined with our efforts to ensure only one response was counted per eligible Australian, means Australians can have confidence these statistics reflect the country’s views.”

The detailed results published for national, states and territories and Federal Electoral Divisions are accompanied by a statement on the quality and integrity of the results.

“We’re grateful almost all respondents complied with the survey instructions and this enabled extremely accurate response coding, allowing us to quickly produce these results and complete all the requirements of the Treasurer’s Direction,” he said.

Mr Kalisch acknowledged the large number of agencies across Government and the private sector, including the Australian Electoral Commission, the Department of Human Services and Australia Post, that assisted the ABS to undertake this survey.

“With their help, the ABS conducted this survey to the standard expected by the community, and to meet the requirements of the Legal Direction from the Treasurer.

“In addition, while costs are still being tallied, the ABS is confident the final cost for the survey will be under $100 million, many million dollars less than the available budget,” he said.

The official statistics, including a count of responses (Yes, No and Response Not Clear) by Federal Electoral Division, State/Territory and National, are available from www.marriagesurvey.abs.gov.au/results

Key results


Region

Yes

No

Total

Participation

rate


Australia

61.6%

38.4%

100%

79.5%


New South Wales

57.8%

42.2%

100%

79.5%


Victoria

64.9%

35.1%

100%

81.7%


Queensland

60.7%

39.3%

100%

77.9%


South Australia

62.5%

37.5%

100%

79.7%


Western Australia

63.7%

36.3%

100%

78.4%


Tasmania

63.6%

36.4%

100%

79.7%


Northern Territory(a)

60.6%

39.4%

100%

58.4%


Australian Capital Territory(b)

74.0%

26.0%

100%

82.4%


(a) Includes Christmas Island and the Cocos (Keeling) Islands (within the Division of Lingiari).

(b) Includes Jervis Bay (within the Division of Fenner) and Norfolk Island (within the Division of Canberra).


Federal Electoral Divisions by majority results

Number of Divisions

Range of response result

Yes

No


50 to less than 60% 38 11

60 to less than 70% 67 5

70 to less than 80% 24 1

80 to less than 90% 4 0

Total 133 17

Federal Electoral Divisions by participation


Participation range Number of Divisions

50 to less than 60% 1

60 to less than 70% 3

70 to less than 80% 70

80 to less than 90% 76

Total 150

Further information at the Federal Electoral Division level is available at www.marriagesurvey.abs.gov.au/results