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Polls

Survey of Greater Washington, D.C. Jews Marks Improvement on Jewish Disability Inclusion

Survey of 172 Jews in the D.C. community shows progress, while identifying areas in need of continued improvement

Washington, D.C., January 7 – In a recently released major survey of 2,321 Jewish individuals nationwide, RespectAbility, a nonprofit organization that fights stigmas and advances opportunities so people with disabilities can participate fully in all aspects of community, in partnership with Jewish Federation of Greater Washington, surveyed 172 members of the D.C. Jewish community. This allowed a deep look into disability inclusion in D.C., as well as a strong and meaningful comparison to the national numbers. Of the 172 respondents, 143 either personally have a disability or have a close disability connection. The survey demonstrates that Jewish communal organizations are making strong progress toward building a more inclusive community for people with physical, sensory, mental health and other disabilities.

The data showed that 68 percent of D.C. area Jewish respondents felt the Jewish community was “better” at “including people with disabilities” compared to five years ago. Only one percent felt that the community was doing “somewhat worse.”

“More and more Jewish institutions now understand that we are a stronger community when we are welcoming, diverse, and respect one another,” said RespectAbility VP Matan Koch. “The numbers in the D.C. area show the results of strong leadership, values and practices in the Jewish community.” [continue reading…]

Survey of Houston Jews Marks Improvement on Jewish Disability Inclusion

Survey of 192 Jews in the Houston community shows progress, while identifying areas in need of continued improvement

Houston, TX, Dec. 23 – In a recently released major survey of 2,321 Jewish individuals nationwide, RespectAbility, a nonprofit organization that fights stigmas and advances opportunities so people with disabilities can participate fully in all aspects of community, in partnership with JFS Houston, surveyed 192 members of the Houston Jewish community. This allowed a deep look into disability inclusion in Houston, as well as a strong and meaningful comparison to the national numbers. Of the 192 respondents, 160 either personally have a disability or have a close disability connection. The survey demonstrates that Jewish communal organizations are making strong progress toward building a more inclusive community for people with physical, sensory, mental health and other disabilities.

The data showed that 67 percent of Houston Jewish respondents felt the Jewish community was “better” at “including people with disabilities” compared to five years ago. Not a single respondent felt that the community was doing “worse.” [continue reading…]

Major Survey Marks Improvement on Jewish Disability Inclusion, with a Gap in Employment and Empowerment: Jews with Disabilities More Than 2X More Likely to Live in Poverty, Despite High Educational Achievement

Survey of 2,321 from Jewish community shows progress from 2018-2021, while identifying areas in need of continued improvement

Full Data from Jewish Respondents Available Online Now

Rockville, Maryland, Nov. 17 – A major new survey of 2,321 Jewish individuals fielded by RespectAbility, a nonprofit organization that fights stigmas and advances opportunities so people with disabilities can participate fully in all aspects of community, demonstrates that Jewish communal organizations are making strong progress toward building a more inclusive community for people with physical, sensory, mental health and other disabilities. At the same time, the survey identified substantially higher poverty rates, as well as a strong desire to work, among this highly educated population.

The new study showed that 65 percent of Jewish respondents felt the Jewish community was “better” at “including people with disabilities” compared to five years ago. Only one percent felt the community was doing “worse.”

“More and more Jewish institutions now understand that we are a stronger community when we are welcoming, diverse, and respect one another,” said RespectAbility Founder Jennifer Laszlo Mizrahi, who is dyslexic, has ADHD and knows what it means to parent a child with multiple disabilities. “However, at the same time, there is a gap where the rubber meets the road as nondisabled Jews feel more has been accomplished in comparison to how Jews with disabilities themselves feel. Indeed, hundreds of Jews with disabilities and their loved ones shared specific and sometimes truly painful examples of when they were unable to participate in Jewish communities due to lack of access and inclusion.” [continue reading…]

RespectAbility Urges Pollsters to Track the Disability Voice and Vote

Washington, D.C., Oct. 21 – With one in four adults having a disability, the national, nonpartisan disability inclusion organization RespectAbility is urging pollsters and polling firms to include people who live with a physical, sensory, cognitive or other disability in their polling data. For decades pollsters have included demographics by race, gender, age and educational levels. However, voters with disabilities often are left out of polling.

Researchers at Rutgers University estimate that approximately 38.3 million people with disabilities are eligible to vote in this year’s election, which is roughly one-sixth of the electorate. “Millions of Americans with disabilities are more engaged and active than ever before and it’s time for us to be counted, just like anyone else,” said RespectAbility’s President, Jennifer Laszlo Mizrahi. [continue reading…]

New Poll Shows 81% of Registered Voters Support Allowing SNAP Users to Order Groceries Online for Delivery Using Food Stamps

51% of Voters Want to Vote By Mail

Washington, D.C., May 13 – According to a new poll conducted by Democracy Corps on behalf of the Center for Voter Information, 81 percent of registered voters (84 percent of voters with disabilities) say they favor allowing people who use Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), to be able to order and pay for groceries and delivery online, so they don’t have to go into stores.

But 15 states have yet to ensure their high-risk residents can receive online grocery deliveries through SNAP (also known as food stamps), leading to millions of people with and without disabilities risking exposure to COVID-19 or going hungry. An additional 13 states have applied to the USDA and bureaucrats in Washington, D.C. so that people with disabilities can use their food stamps to deliver groceries. However, they are in wait mode – living in fear and in need of safe access to food.

“Ensuring people can use SNAP to order food online to receive via delivery does not cost the government any more money,” said RespectAbility President Jennifer Laszlo Mizrahi. “It is heartening to see that this polling data showing that 81 percent of voters support this initiative is nonpartisan, with both Democrats and Republicans in support.” [continue reading…]

New Battleground Poll Data Shows Disability Community is Large and Electorally Contested

Washington, D.C., March 19 – New polling data of the battleground states shows that the disability community is large and electorally contested, but the issues they care about most are not being sufficiently addressed.

The phone poll of 1,000 registered voters across 16 presidential and Senate battleground states was conducted by Stan Greenberg, Ph.D., and the polling firm Greenberg Quinlan Rosner Research (GQRR), on behalf of the disability inclusion organization RespectAbility. The data was released on a webinar earlier today. The memocross-tab data, and PowerPoint are available to download now. The webinar recording will be available to watch with captions early next week.

The key findings of the poll include: [continue reading…]

Majority of Voters Have Disability Connections

  • 85% of voters find it very or somewhat important that presidential candidates have campaign events and websites that are open and accessible to people with disabilities, just like everyone else.

  • 73% of voters are more likely to support candidates for elected office who will make ensuring that children with disabilities get the education and training they need to succeed a priority.

  • 70% of voters are more likely to support candidates for elected office who will make expanding job and career opportunities for people with disabilities a priority, so they can succeed just like anyone else.

Rockville, Maryland, Oct. 10, 2019 – A new poll reveals that 85 percent of registered voters say it is very or somewhat important to them that presidential candidates have campaign events and websites that are open and accessible to people with disabilities, just like everyone else. Voters with disabilities themselves are more enthusiastic about participating in the 2020 elections (52 percent), four points higher than the national average. Despite both of these data points, none of the presidential candidates on either side have made their websites and social media fully accessible to voters with disabilities. [continue reading…]

Poll: Most California Jews Don’t Know Any Rabbis or Staff with Disabilities

Mental health conditions listed as most common disability in Jewish community

Los Angeles, California, Jan. 9 – More than 4000 respondents participated in a RespectAbility survey focused on the inclusion of people with disabilities in faith communities in America. This includes 183 Jews with disabilities in California and additional 79 with no disability connection in the state. Fully 104 of the respondents reported that they are served by the Jewish Federation of Greater LA. Nationally the poll includes more than 900 Jews who self-disclose that they are a person with a disability.

Text: Do you know of any clergy or staff with disabilities at your own faith based institutions? Pie chart with results.

Only 17% of Jewish respondents with disabilities in California know of any clergy or staff with disabilities at their synagogue.

The Jewish respondents with disabilities in California and across the nation point to a lack of people with disabilities in leadership roles as clergy or staff at Jewish institutions. They also do not fully feel welcomed to serve as leaders in lay positions in the Jewish community either. Only 15 percent of Jews with disabilities know of a person with a disability in a leadership position. Only 6 percent of the California Jews with no disability connection who were polled know of a person with a disability in leadership. Nationally it is slightly higher at nearly 10 percent. Only 13 percent of California Jews in the disability community answer “yes” that they “feel that people with disabilities are encouraged to serve on the boards and committees of your faith-based institutions.” This is also five points lower than the national results of 18 percent.

Said Jennifer Laszlo Mizrahi, RespectAbility’s president who herself is dyslexic, “If you see it, you can be it – and today Jews with disabilities need more role models with disabilities in leadership in the Jewish community. Many also want to be recruited, trained and empowered to make the Jewish community stronger, just like anyone else.” [continue reading…]

Poll: Most D.C.-area Jews Don’t Know Any Rabbis or Staff with Disabilities

Concerns High on Access to Healthcare, Education, Jobs, Fighting Stigmas and Jewish Inclusion

Washington, D.C., January 7, 2019 – More than 4000 respondents participated in a RespectAbility survey focused on the inclusion of people with disabilities in faith communities in America. This includes 133 Jews in the disability community in the Washington, D.C., Maryland and Virginia area, and an additional 42 with no disability connection in this region. More than 900 Jews who self-disclose they are a person with a disability participated in the study overall.

Text: Do you know of any clergy or staff with disabilities at your own faith based institutions? Pie chart with results.

59% of Jewish D.C.-area respondents with disabilities do not know of any clergy or staff with disabilities at their synagogue.

The Jewish respondents with disabilities in the District of Columbia, Maryland and Virginia (DMV) region and across the nation point to a lack of people with disabilities in leadership roles as Rabbis, cantors or staff at Jewish institutions. While overall things are improving significantly in terms of access and inclusion for Jews with disabilities in the DMV, they also do not yet fully feel welcomed to serve as leaders in lay positions in the Jewish community. Only 15 percent of Jews with disabilities know of a person with a disability in a leadership position. Nationally fewer than 10 percent of Jews with no disability connection know of a person with a disability in leadership. Only 17 percent of area Jews in the disability community answer “yes” that they “feel that people with disabilities are encouraged to serve on the boards and committees of your faith-based institutions,” which is in line with the national results at 18 percent.

Said Jennifer Laszlo Mizrahi, president of RespectAbility, “If you see it, you can be it – and today Jews with disabilities need more role models with disabilities in leadership in the Jewish community. Many also want to be recruited, trained and empowered to make the Jewish community stronger, just like anyone else.” [continue reading…]

Disabilities Affect 74 Percent of Likely Voters

As National Disability Employment Awareness Month Begins, A Wake-Up Call to Candidates

Washington, D.C., Oct. 1 – It’s the month before the midterm elections and one of the nation’s leading disability organizations has a wake-up call for candidates. “Fully three-quarters of likely voters either have a disability themselves or have a family member, or a close friend with disabilities,” said former Representative and Dallas Mayor Steve Bartlett. Bartlett is the chairman of RespectAbility, a Washington-based nonpartisan nonprofit that fights stigmas and advances opportunities so people with disabilities can participate in all aspects of community.

Steve Bartlett headshot in black suit, white shirt, red tie

Steve Bartlett

“Our survey shows that 74 percent of likely voters are touched by disabilities,” said Bartlett, who was a primary author of the Americans With Disabilities Act of 1990. “Our nation was founded on the principle that anyone who works hard should be able to get ahead in life. These folks deserve an equal opportunity to earn an income and achieve independence just like anyone else. Candidates for office ignore the disability community at their peril.”

According to the Census Bureau, more than 56 million Americans live with some form of disability. This can include visible conditions such as spinal cord injuries, visual impairments or hearing loss to people living with invisible disabilities such as learning disabilities, mental health or Autism.

“Of particular note from the survey is that while there are certain issues historically on which people with disabilities feel more strongly than Americans without disabilities, such as healthcare and employment opportunities, they track in a similar way to Americans overall when it comes to their political identity,” noted Meagan Buren, pollster for RespectAbility.

A recent poll of 1000 likely voters shows that fully 34 percent are grouped as swing voters, 36 percent as Democrat and 29 percent as Republican. More than half of Americans with disabilities have reached out to their elected officials or attended a political rally in the recent past versus 39 percent of Americans without a disability or any disability connection. Nearly three-quarters of people with disabilities watch, read or listen to the news 5-7 times a week.

“This is a politically active, swing vote demographic and candidates should take note of important issues they care about, especially around employment opportunities,” Buren added. [continue reading…]

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