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Life in Scotland

Life in Scotland for LGBT Young People 2022’ is the largest piece of research on LGBTI young people in Scotland. Our survey collected data from 1279 respondents from across Scotland. 

Content Warning: this report has quotes from respondents which some people may find distressing. This includes descriptions of physical and verbal abuse, homophobia / biphobia / transphobia, and bullying.

Key findings
from each section of the report can be found below – download the report to find out much more about each area.


  • There has been a reduction overall in the percentage of participants rating Scotland a good place to be LGBTI over the last 5 years. This was 81% in 2017 and has fallen to 65% in 2022 
  • Just 28% rural-based participants rated their local area as a good place to be LGBTI as compared to 62% of urban-based participants 


Coming out 

  • 82% of participants received a supportive or very supportive reaction from the first person they had come out to, an increase from 75% in 2017  



  • The vast majority of participants believe that homophobia, biphobia, and transphobia are a problem, both across Scotland as a whole, and in their local area. 
  • 69% of participants believe that transphobia is a big problem in Scotland  


Keeping safe 

  • Just 17% of young people surveyed reported that they would feel confident reporting a hate crime to the police if they experienced one 


Keeping healthy 

  • Just 56% of participants think that they have enough information about mental health 
  • only 25% of the people who have received formal sex education classes have seen LGBTI topics discussed within them 



  • Only 10% of participants, rated the experience of school for LGBT people as “good”.  
  • 70% of gay/lesbian participants report experiencing bullying due to their sexual orientation at school.  


Work life 

  • Just over half (54%) of participants felt safe to be their authentic self as an LGBTI person at work/in training 


Living situation 

  • Participants are more likely to report leaving home in positive circumstances than they were in 2017 with 87% of cisgender and 72% of transgender participants who have left home reporting that “It was my decision and I left under positive circumstances”.  



  • 81% of participants felt that the way that LGBTI people are portrayed in the media is not accurate 
  • 94% of participants who are eligible do vote in parliamentary elections  



  • 83% of participants felt that their education had been affected by COVID-19 and 69% of participants felt that their connection with their community had been affected. 

What you can do 

  • Download the report here to find out more. 
  • Share the report online using the hashtag #LifeinScotland and tag our social media accounts @LGBTYS.
  • Read our press release, including responses from our Chief Executive, Dr Mhairi Crawford and members of our Youth Reference Group. [LINK to press release].


Thanks to everyone who took part in this survey… 

The team at LGBT Youth Scotland would like to say a massive thank you to every young person who took time out of their lives to give constructive and thoughtful responses to A LOT of questions.  Every word written has been read and helped shape this report, and helps inspire us to do the work we do. 

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