About a quarter of LGBTQ people in Japan have experienced outing — having their sexual orientation or gender identity disclosed to others without their consent, an online survey showed Wednesday.
Also according to the survey, about two-thirds of the 10,769 respondents in their teens through their 70s felt society was more "respectful" toward lesbians, gays, bisexuals and transgender people than five years ago. However, nearly 80% of those who were employed said they have heard anti-LGBTQ words.
The survey is the largest of its kind on outings, according to Yasuharu Hidaka, a professor of social epidemiology at Takarazuka University, who conducted it from September to December last year on behalf of Lifenet Insurance Co.
The survey found 25.1% of respondents said they had been outed, with transgender men reporting the most such cases at 53.6%.
Of the 8,690 respondents with jobs, 78.9% said they "have heard discriminatory speech about sexual minorities at work or school."
Hidaka said outings fuel "fear of those who are not out about their lives crumbling, with the worst case scenario leading to their deaths."
"Discriminatory speech and actions increase their fear about how they would be perceived by those around them," he added.
The survey also found that 66.9% of respondents said that "compared with five years ago, diversity of sexual orientation and gender identity is better recognized by society."
"Society's understanding continues to change. Government authorities and firms must make coordinated efforts to deepen understanding (about diversity of sexual orientation and gender identities)," Hidaka said.
While Japan does not recognize same-sex marriage, a number of municipalities issue partnership certificates for LGBTQ couples.
A law enacted in June also requires firms to take measures against abuse of power, which includes outings and insults of sexual and gender minority people in its government guidelines.