TEL AVIV (JTA) — Ahead of Tel Aviv Pride, 79 percent of Israelis Jews told pollsters they support allowing same-sex marriage or civil unions for gay couples.
According to Hiddush, the religious pluralism group that commissioned the poll released Thursday, public support for allowing gay couples to marry in Israel has reached an all-time high. The group found 76 percent support last year, and just 53 percent in 2009.
The Rafi Smith Polling Institute conducted the poll of 500 Israeli Jewish adults on June 5 and 6, asking, “Do you think same-sex couples should be permitted to marry or have civil unions in Israel?” The margin of error is 4.5 percent.
“The gulf between the Israeli public will and the government’s policies is widening,” Regev said.“While the Jewish public is increasingly open and supportive of the realization of individual freedoms in the spirit of Israel’s Declaration of Independence, which promised freedom of religion and conscience for all, the Israeli government coalition kowtows to the ultra-Orthodox political parties, perpetuating state-enforced religious coercion and infringement of civil rights and human dignity in Israel.
According to Hiddush, there are some 284,000 gay people in the country, who cannot marry due to the lack of civil marriage or state recognition for gay marriage.