South Africans continue to find homosexuality unacceptable, but reassuring figures revealed last week show many people are teaching their children more tolerant attitudes.

The South African survey of values, conducted last year by the Centre for International and Comparative Politics at the University of Stellenbosch, shows even those with a negative attitude towards gays are teaching their children to be more tolerant.

A scale of acceptability saw South Africans put homosexual acts as more acceptable than prostitution and abortion, but less acceptable than mercy killing and divorce.

Gay neighbourhoods were unacceptable to 48 percent of blacks, 26 percent of whites, 37 percent of coloureds and 39 percent of Indians.

21 percent of Indians, 13 percent of whites, six percent of blacks and nine percent of coloureds did not want neighbours with Aids.

Worryingly, 10 percent of South Africans think it is sometimes justified for a man to beat his wife.

Asked which people or institutions they trusted the most, the church did best, with 85 percent of respondents saying they trusted it.

The President and television came second, but political parties trailed towards the end of the list.