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July 28, 2021 3:18 pm
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US Jews More Likely to Support COVID-19 Vaccine Push Compared With Other Religious Groups, New Survey Finds

avatar by Algemeiner Staff

A healthcare worker prepares a dose of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine for the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) during the opening of the MTA’s public vaccination program at Grand Central Terminal train station in Manhattan in New York City, New York, U.S., May 12, 2021. REUTERS/Carlo Allegri

Jewish Americans are among the demographics with the greatest readiness to vaccinate against COVID-19, a survey published on Wednesday found.

The survey, conducted by the Public Religion Research Institute (PRRI)/Interfaith Youth Core (IFYC), concluded that “Jewish Americans are most likely to be vaccine accepters,” with 85 percent of Jews in the US either fully vaccinated or having started the process.

The aim of the survey was to examine any correlations between religious identities and willingness to vaccinate. Despite the widespread availability of vaccines, just under 50 percent of Americans have had the shot. In several states, including Mississippi, Alabama and Arkansas, less than 35 percent of the population has been vaccinated, with much of the reluctance due to the spread of false information and conspiracy theories about the virus.

American Jews surveyed were more likely to look at these claims with skepticism, compared with members of other religious groups. The survey noted that “Hispanic Protestants and white evangelical Protestants remain the least likely religious groups to be vaccine accepters (56 percent for both groups), but both groups nonetheless saw double-digit increases in acceptance since March (43 percent and 45 percent, respectively).”

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It also observed that vaccine acceptance had increased significantly in the last two months around other specific demographics, including Hispanic Catholics, Black Protestants and Latter-Day Saints.

The poll found Republicans were one of the biggest demographic groups overall to refuse or be hesitant about the vaccine, along with Americans under 50 and rural Americans. Women were also found to be slightly more likely to be opposed to the vaccine than men.

Religious leaders also have a key role to play in encouraging uptake of the vaccine, the poll found.

Just under 20 percent of vaccine refusers think faith-based approaches would help encourage them to get vaccinated — such as appeals from trusted faith leaders or communities, or making vaccines available at places of worship — as well as 32 percent of white evangelical Protestants who regularly attend church services and are hesitant about getting the shot.

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