A new report into ‘Islamophobia, social distance and fear of terrorism in Australia,’ by the University of South Australia’s International Centre for Muslim and non-Muslim Understanding has shown how Australians really feel.
And if you’re less educated, unemployed, older and/or Liberal-leaning, you’re more likely to hold anti-Islam values.
The report investigated how “age, religion, place of residence, employment status and political views affect the likelihood that someone is Islamophobic, feels socially distant from Muslims, or is worried about a terrorist attack”.
A survey of 1000 people found 70 per cent of Australians had low levels of Islamophobia, 20 per cent were undecided and 10 per cent were classed as “highly Islamophobic”, with Islamophobia defined as “negative and hostile attitudes towards Islam and Muslims”, reports Huffington Post.
Respondents recorded their views on the below on a scale of 1-5:
- 17 per cent of respondents agreed with the statement “just to be safe it is important to stay away from places where Muslims could be”
- Almost seven percent would not feel comfortable talking to a Muslim
- Almost a quarter would “support any policy that will stop the building of a new mosque”
- 14 per cent “would avoid going to places where Muslims would be”
The highest levels of Islamophobic respondents were reported in NSW and Queensland, and Australia-wide those in the 65-74 bracket had the highest levels of Islamophobia, while those in the 25-34 age group had the lowest.
If a respondent hadn’t completed year 12, they were fives times more likely to be Islamophobic compared to people who had university degrees.
And if you have a job, you’re less likely than people who are unemployed to hold Islamophobic views.
Greens supporters were the least Islamophobic, while 3.2 per cent of Liberal supporters and 0.9 per cent of Labor supporters were among the most scared of muslims.
“Respondents with political affiliations with the Liberal and Country parties have significantly higher levels of Islamophobia than those with political affiliations with the centre-left Labor Party. The Greens voters tend to have the lowest Islamophobia score,” the report’s authors wrote.
“There are pockets of prejudice and anxiety directed towards Muslims, for example among the aged and those facing financial insecurity. But the great majority of Australians in all states and regions are comfortable to live alongside Australian Muslims,” the report concluded.
Tell us, do you think these survey results reflect your views? Would you consider yourself to be Islamophobic?
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