Poll: American Muslims Are Worried About Their Safety — And Getting More Active in Their Communities

Muslim American children face significantly more religious-based bullying in schools than Americans of any other religious group.

NEW YORK, NY - FEBRUARY 19: Women pray as people take part in a rally dubbed I Am A Muslim Too in a show of solidarity with American Muslims at Times Square on February 19, 2017 in New York City. A new version of a Trump administration refugee and visa ban affecting immigrants from seven Muslim-majority nations reportedly would not stop green card holders or travelers already on flights from entering the United States, though some critics complain the move still would not pass Constituitional muster.  (Photo by Eduardo Munoz Alvarez/Getty Images)
Women pray during a rally to show solidarity with American Muslims at Times Square on Feb. 19, 2017 in New York. Photo: Eduardo Munoz Alvarez/Getty Images

Four out of 10 Muslim Americans with kids in school say their kids have been bullied due to their religious faith over the past year — significantly more than Americans of any other religious group.

That’s one of several findings from a new poll commissioned by the Institute for Social Policy Understanding, which surveyed both American Muslims and Americans of other faiths to illustrate differences in how various religious groups are experiencing the current political climate.

Here are some of the results:

  • Muslim children face the most religious-based bullying in schools: 42 percent of Muslims with children in K-12 schools have reported bulling of their children due to their religious faith during the past year. Jewish Americans reported the second-highest level of bullying, with 23 percent saying their kids received bullying due to their faith over the past year; 20 percent of Protestants and just 6 percent of Catholics reported the same.
  • Muslim Americans are more scared for their personal safety than any other religious group: 38 percent of Muslims surveyed said they now fear for their personal safety from white supremacist groups following the results of the 2016 election. By comparison, 27 percent of Jewish Americans polled felt the same, while just 11 percent of Protestants and 8 percent of Catholics shared that view.
  • Muslims are facing additional screening at the border more than any other religious group: Among those who reported traveling internationally over the past year, 30 percent of Muslims reported being stopped for additional screening at the border. By contrast, 13 percent of Jews and 11 percent of Catholics and Protestants reported the same.
  • More Muslims report religious-based discrimination than any other group: Overall, 60 percent of American Muslims said they had been subjected to religious-based discrimination of some form over the past year, compared to 38 percent of Jewish Americans and 11 percent of Catholics.

The poll also provided a window into Muslim American political engagement. It found a high level of dissatisfaction with both the election itself and the outcome: 30 percent of respondents said they supported neither Hillary Clinton nor Donald Trump; 54 percent supported Clinton; 15 percent favored Trump’s win.

But the poll also found an increase in civic engagement among American Muslims post-election. For example, 23 percent of Muslim Americans said they have increased their financial giving to civic organizations as a result of the election; 18 percent said they joined, donated to, or volunteered with civic organizations for the first time as a result of the election.

The poll also showed a strong current of support for broader anti-racist movements among Muslim Americans. Muslims showed the most support for the Black Lives Matter movement, with 66 percent reporting support compared to 58 percent of Jewish Americans and less than 39 percent of Catholics and Protestants.

Top photo: Women pray during a rally to show solidarity with American Muslims at Times Square on Feb. 19, 2017, in New York.

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