Poll: Many Americans link crime with growing ethnic diversity

The poll was conducted among 3,000 people in English, Spanish, Mandarin, Cantonese, Korean and Vietnamese.

Thousands of demonstrators gather in Los Angeles on May 1, 2013, as part of May Day national marches and rallies, energized by the possibility of immigration reform. The demonstrations are intended to press Congress to enact legislation ending deportations.

Almost half of Americans surveyed are concerned that crime and related problems in neighborhoods will grow as the country becomes more ethnically diverse, according to a poll conducted by the Center for American Progress.

Research by the center and PolicyLink, a national organization that studies economic and social issues, found that 70 percent of respondents believe Americans will benefit from learning more about different cultures through growing diversity. But 47 percent in the survey said they’re worried that crime will increase as ethnic minorities move into neighborhoods.

“Based on what we know, it goes hand-in-hand with people feeling threatened by immigrants, and that could be part of the explanation,” said Vanessa Cardenas, vice president of the center’s Progress 2050, a project that advocates for more inclusion of ethnic minorities. “They haven’t had the opportunity to be exposed to different races.”


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