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Teacher-Scott Elementary School

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Teacher-Lake Park High School


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Gallup Releases Groundbreaking Poll on Muslim Americans, 03/02/09

This week Gallup released a report on one of the most extensive surveys of Muslim Americans, in combination with two other Gallup polls. The report is titled “Muslim Americans: A National Portrait" and includes findings from the first-ever nationwide representative random sample of Muslim Americans (in the Gallup Daily Poll), as well as from Gallup-Healthways Well-Being Index, and Gallup World Poll. The Gallup Center for Muslim Studies conducted the study as part of its Muslim West Facts project to “explore Muslim Americans' attitudes on issues ranging from emotional well-being, political views, the economy, and the importance of faith in the lives of Muslims living in America.”

The study finds that Muslim Americans are the most racially diverse religious group surveyed in the United States, with African Americans making up the largest group at 35%., followed by Whites at 28%, and Asians at 18%. The survey found that one of the ethnic groups, Asian-Americans (from India and Pakistan) not only have more income and education than other Muslim Americans, but that their quality of life indicators are higher than for most other Americans, except for American Jews. It finds that as a whole, Muslim Americans are among the most highly educated religious groups in the US.

This educational level applies to Muslim women as well as men.
One of the most significant findings of the survey was that contrary to common perceptions, American Muslim women are more likely than American Muslim men to have college and post-graduate degrees. Additionally, they are more highly educated than women in every other religious group except Jews, with 43% of Muslim American women holding a college or postgraduate degree, compared with 29% of American women overall. Muslim American women also are as likely as Muslim men to have a profession, with 30% in professional work and 25% self employed. They also report incomes more nearly equal to men, compared with women and men of other faiths, and attend mosque as frequently as Muslim men.

The study also shows that Muslim Americans are quite religious, with 80% saying that religion is an important part of their daily lives - more than any other group except Mormons (85%) in comparison to Americans in general at 65%. However, their rate of weekly worship attendance is comparable to other religious groups at 41%.

Muslim’s political participation has risen in recent years, but still falls behind that of other groups with 64% of Muslims registered to vote compared with 81% of the general population. By political ideology, Muslims were spread across the spectrum from liberal to conservative, with about 4 in 10 saying they were moderates. By party identification, about half are Democrats, a third independents with small minorities registered as Republicans. 79% voted for Barack Obama, the highest percentage of any religious group.

But at the same time, the report finds that when asked to evaluate their lives as well as their expectations of where they think they will be in five years, only 41% of Muslim Americans reported that they considered to be "thriving," the lowest percentage among the religious groups studied in the U.S. However, “when comparing the percentage of ‘thriving’ Muslim Americans with Muslims in other Western societies as well as those in predominantly Muslim countries, Muslim Americans are among the groups with the largest percentage of respondents who say they are thriving.

This groundbreaking report sheds light on “a community that is frequently discussed, but often misunderstood. It captures the nuances of a Muslim American population that, although facing its equal share of challenges, remains a largely untapped resource of American talent.”

For media coverage of the report go to:




To learn more about the project and download the entire report, visit: The Muslims West Facts Project at:



Based in the San Francisco Bay Area, ING is a national educational outreach organization with affiliates and partners around the country. ING promotes interfaith dialogue and education about world religions and their contributions to civilization by annually delivering thousands of presentations and other educational programs in schools, universities, law enforcement agencies, corporations, healthcare facilities, and community centers. Reaching hundreds of groups and tens of thousands of individuals a year at the local, grassroots level, ING is building bridges among people of all faiths.

Last updated Tuesday, March 10, 2009 8:16 PM
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