Most Americans Think Religious Institutions Should Be Forced To Provide Contraception

The American public is widely uncompromising on religious freedom issues, according to a Pew Survey which shows two-thirds say employees should be forced to provide contraception in health insurance plans for their workers.

According to a Pew Research Centre Survey, the US public are broadly evenly divided on whether transgender people should be allowed to use public bathrooms of the gender with which they currently identify.Reuters

Only three in ten of adults polled say that businesses should be allowed to refuse to cover birthMost  control for their employees for religious reasons.

The Pew Research Centre survey of more than 4,500 American adults explored recent controversies over 'religious freedom' issues.

Pew said in its report: "One of the goals of the survey was to see how many Americans feel torn because they can understand where both sides are coming from on these issues. The short answer is: not many."

However, the poll found that the public was more evenly divided on the question of whether businesses with religious objections should be able to refuse to provide wedding services, such as catering or flowers, to same-sex couples.

Nearly half (49 per cent) say that such businesses should be required to provide these services to same-sex couples as they would for heterosexual couples.

But almost the same amount of people (48 per cent) say businesses should be allowed to refuse services to same-sex couples if they have religious objections to homosexuality.

Similarly, on the debate about bathroom use by transgender people, around half of Americans (51 per cent) say transgender people should be allowed to use public restrooms of the gender with which they currently identify, while nearly as many (46 per cent) say transgender individuals should be required to use restrooms of the gender they were born into.

"It's interesting to see that so many Americans are in agreement about the question about the provision of birth control in employer-provided health care," said a senior researcher at Pew, Jessica Martinez.

"You see a lot more division on the other two topics we asked about," she added, referring to wedding services for gay couples and bathroom use by people who are transgender.