Poll: Most Hispanics Say Discrimination A Problem - TennisForum.com
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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old Dec 17th, 2002, 05:31 PM Thread Starter
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Exclamation Poll: Most Hispanics Say Discrimination A Problem

Poll: Most Hispanics Say Discrimination A Problem
Most Respondents Optimistic About Economic Opportunities In U.S.

POSTED: 11:38 a.m. EST December 17, 2002

WASHINGTON -- The vast majority of Hispanics in the United States think discrimination is a problem and nearly a third say they or someone they know have experienced discrimination within the past five years, according to a survey released Tuesday.

The survey also found nearly nine in 10 Hispanics say the United States offers better economic opportunity for them than the country from which they or their family came, and a similar percentage said immigrants had to learn English to succeed.

The poll was conducted for the Pew Hispanic Center and the Kaiser Family Foundation, both research groups. It found 31 percent of Latinos say they or someone they know were discriminated against because of their background, compared with 46 percent of blacks.

An overwhelming majority of Hispanics considered Latino discrimination against other Latinos to be a problem, though views varied according to a person's background. For instance, Colombians and Dominicans were more likely to consider such discrimination a problem than Puerto Ricans.

Hispanics who experience such discrimination may tend to live more in primarily Latino neighborhoods where other Latinos hold management positions such as landlords or shopkeepers, Pew Hispanic Center director Roberto Suro said at a news conference Thursday. Many families from Puerto Rico, which is a U.S. territory, have a longer history in the country than other groups and may be more likely to hold such positions.

The poll of adults surveyed by telephone last spring included 2,929 who identified themselves as Hispanics, along with 1,008 whites and 171 blacks. The poll had a margin of error of plus or minus 2.4 percentage points for Latinos overall, plus or minus 3.3 percentage points for whites and plus or minus 9.9 percentage points for blacks.

The federal government considers Hispanic to be an ethnicity, not a race; people of Hispanic ethnicity can be of any race. Blacks and whites surveyed were not of Hispanic ethnicity.

The 2000 census showed the Hispanic population more than doubled during the 1990s, to 35.3 million, with many new arrivals drawn by the booming U.S. economy. Hispanics now rival blacks as the nation's largest minority group.

The wide-ranging poll measured views on racial, economic and social issues. And while blacks and whites were polled, the survey primarily focused on Hispanic viewpoints.

"Overall, the findings suggest the need for new ways of thinking about the Hispanic population in this country," Roberto Suro, director of the Pew Hispanic Center, and four other authors wrote in a 100-page report. "It is neither monolithic nor a hodgepodge of distinct national origin groups."

More than 82 percent of Latinos surveyed said discrimination is a problem that prevents them from succeeding in the United States, compared with 62 percent of blacks and 59 percent of whites. Meanwhile, 14 percent of Latinos surveyed said they had not been hired or promoted for a job because of their background, compared with 31 percent of blacks and 8 percent of whites.

Steven Camarota, a researcher with the Center for Immigration Studies, called the findings significant, though he cautioned that many responses also may have captured perceptions of discrimination rather than actual occurrences.

The poll found 38 percent of Latinos born in the United States said they have personally experienced discrimination or know someone who has, compared to 28 percent of Latinos who immigrated to America. Those who speak English as a first language also were more apt to report discrimination than those who primarily speak Spanish.

That may be because those who are U.S.-educated or speak better English can better decipher instances of discrimination, said Camarota, whose group advocates limits on immigration.

"On some levels, Sept. 11 raised the whole question of who belongs in this country and who doesn't. In doing that, it gave voice and permitted people to discriminate," said Vibiana Andrade, vice president of public policy for the Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund in Los Angeles.

Among Latinos surveyed, 89 percent said the United States offered better economic opportunities than the country from which they or their ancestors arrived, and 80 percent said they were confident U.S. Hispanic children would receive a better education than they did.

The poll also found Hispanics tend to be more socially conservative than whites, with immigrants more so than Latinos born in the United States.
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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old Dec 17th, 2002, 05:54 PM Thread Starter
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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old Dec 17th, 2002, 11:29 PM Thread Starter
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However, I know it's not a problem in Miami.
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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old Dec 18th, 2002, 12:03 AM
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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old Dec 18th, 2002, 06:58 PM Thread Starter
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German Rodriguez and his 17 year old son Camilo live in Weston. Rodriguez struggles with the changing values his son has assimilated in America, as do many Latino parents.

Hispanics feel bias from other Latins, study says


An overwhelming majority of U.S. Hispanics believe they are discriminated against by other Latins, largely due to their national origin and income level, according to a national survey released today.

The poll underscores the vast diversity among Hispanics, who are more likely to identify with their birth countries than be clumped together in one pan-ethnic group that shares a common language.

Eighty-three percent of Hispanics said discrimination by other Latins is a problem, and one in six reported a personal experience with discrimination, according to the survey by the Pew Hispanic Center and the Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation in Washington, D.C.

''People get hardened here. It's not just other Latinos but also those of your own country. They want to pay you less. They don't appreciate your work. Sometimes they don't even pay you,'' said Colombian Germán Rodríguez, a civil engineer who left Medellín for Weston two years ago. ``That has happened to me many times.''


The survey included 2,929 Hispanic adults, 1,008 white non-Hispanics and 171 black non-Hispanics from around the nation who were telephoned at random from April to June. Among Hispanics, the countries of origin spanned Central and South America, the Caribbean and Mexico.

The results show that while Hispanics share some common beliefs, distinct viewpoints have emerged as new immigrants arrive, and older immigrants and their children become assimilated into U.S. culture.


Hispanics who speak more Spanish than English are less likely to call themselves ''Hispanic'' or ''Latino'' than they are to identify themselves as ''Mexican,'' ''Cuban,'' ''Colombian'' and other nationalities.

''The Hispanic thing is really a constructed identity that is not naturally out there in this world,'' said Alex Stepick, director of the Immigration and Ethnicity Institute at FIU. ``All these people speak the same language but before they got to the United States they didn't recognize themselves as Hispanic or Latino.''

More than 76 percent of Hispanics said they were confident Latin children growing up in the United States would be better educated and make more money than them, but only 56 percent said they would hold the same moral values.


Foreign-born Hispanics tended to be more conservative on some social issues than those born in the United States. Twenty percent of immigrants said homosexual sex was ''acceptable,'' compared with 33 percent of those born in the United States. Fifty-one percent of immigrants found divorce acceptable, compared with 65 percent of U.S.-born Latins.

''There's a strong sense among Latinos that the U.S. offers better economic opportunities for Latino children,'' said Mollyann Brodie of the Kaiser Family Foundation. ``On the other hand, they're less certain that this country offers Latinos the chance to share the same moral values and close family ties that they have. Those are the things that worry them.''


Foreign-born Latins are more likely to report language alone as the main reason for discrimination, whereas U.S.-born Latins are more likely to attribute it to their appearance.


Cubans are the least likely -- 27 percent -- to report experiences of unfair treatment. Central Americans are most likely, especially Salvadorans, at 64 percent.

''In Miami's Hispanic hierarchy, Cubans are definitely at the top and then after that it becomes a little more complicated and variable,'' Stepick said. ``It's a part of the broader American tradition of people getting in the country and then turning around and discriminating against who comes after them.''

Colombian Belinda Martinez, 37, who lives in Hialeah, said she thinks Cubans in Miami purposely keep other Hispanic nationalities out of jobs. ''I think that there is discrimination,'' she said.

Joe Garcia, executive director of the Cuban American National Foundation, said discrimination by Cubans is more of a perception than a reality.

''I think what happens with Hispanics is that we expect more from each other and we are invariably disappointed,'' Garcia said. ``There are people always coming in new, which makes for a very competitive climate and that means that you feel put off when your employer hires someone else for less.

``It happened to the Cubans when the Nicaraguans arrived, it happened to the Nicaraguans when the Salvadorans arrived. It happens in a city where more people want to live than there are opportunities available.''

Herald staff writer Elysa Batista contributed to this report.
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