Gay marriage poll wins big support in Redlands

marriage equality: Fellow petitioners Richard Moon and Michael Burge with their petitions.
marriage equality: Fellow petitioners Richard Moon and Michael Burge with their petitions.

A MARRIAGE equality group has received landslide support in a poll, with 94 per cent of Redland residents surveyed backing gay marriage.

A petition asking Redlanders if they support marriage equality gained 685 signatures, with 644 for and 41 against.

Spokesman Michael Burge said the petition was distributed fairly.

"We didn't just approach people who we felt would be automatically supportive,'' he said. "We put ourselves in the pathway of several cross sections of this community at random.

"We were very pleased to have given interested parties with strong views either way the opportunity to drop in at local businesses ... to have their say.''

The group started its petition after Bowman MP Andrew Laming said he would vote in Parliament on marriage equality according to how his electorate dictated.

Bowman survey: MP Andrew Laming with forms with which he surveyed residents.

Bowman survey: MP Andrew Laming with forms with which he surveyed residents.

Mr Laming conducted his own poll, saying that each year the answer was the same. Half the Bowman electorate was for and half against.

But he has declined to reveal his position on the issue, saying he would appropriate his view to the community.

Mr Burge said there was an enormous disparity between Mr Laming's results and his petition.

“Somewhere between his 50:50 finding and our 94:6 response, lies a more accurate picture of the views of the people of Bowman and that is likely the same as the 2014 Crosby-Textor results which shows 72 per cent of all Australians support marriage equality.

“But support for marriage equality may be entering a new record high.

“..Our petition has shown it’s high time for our elected leader to step up to the plate and represent the majority view.''

Although previously commenting on the marriage equality issue, Mr Laming said he would not comment on Mr Burge's poll.

Mr Burge said he wanted to know how Mr Laming would vote.

“He does not occupy his undecided position on marriage equality due to a declared religious conviction, which leads many to ask what are his motivations in not leading on marriage equality?'' Mr Burge said.

“It’s time for a few answers.''

Mr Burge said he worked with national lobby group Australian Marriage Equality and a statistics expert to get an effective snapshot.

Volunteers petitioned people in Capalaba, Victoria Point, Redland Bay, Mount Cotton, Ormiston, Coochiemudlo Island, Birkdale and Cleveland and the jetties to North Stradbroke and the Moreton Bay Islands.

Coochiemudlo Island resident Joanne Hall said she felt nervous about approaching people at jetties.

“It quickly became clear that people wanted their opinions to be known,'' she said.

Of 970 people who voted in a Redland City Bulletin poll on the issue, 809 were for and 154 against, with seven undecided.