donderdag 21 februari 2008

75% Arabisch-Israëlische jongeren voorstander van civiele dienst

Een vrijwillige civiele dienst is een goede maatregel om integratie en gelijkheid te bevorderen, lijkt mij, al ligt het erg aan de manier waarop dit wordt ingevuld. De dienst in de eigen Arabische dorpjes vervullen leidt nauwelijks tot een brede horizon of meer integratie in Israël, en in Joodse steden is het gevaar dat de Arabische jongeren vooral als goedkope hulpjes worden gebruikt.
Ultra-orthodoxe Joden doen deze vrijwillige dienst vooral in hun eigen gemeenschappen, waardoor het nauwelijks bijdraagt aan hun integratie in Israël.
Zeker zal het vervullen van deze nationale dienst voordelen moeten opleveren zoals die nu voor ex-militairen ook gelden, met name voorrang bij huisvesting en studies.

Press Release
Communication and Media Relations
University of Haifa

February 20, 2008

75% of Arab-Israeli youth in favor of civic service

"The high level of support reveals a measure of pragmatism among young Arabs," explains Prof. Sammy Smooha of the University of Haifa who conducted the survey

75% of Arab youths between the ages of 16-22 support volunteer civic service, revealed an attitude survey conducted by Prof. Sammy Smooha, Dean of the Faculty of Social Sciences at the University of Haifa. "While Arab society on the whole exhibits a pragmatic, moderate stance, the Arab leadership which is not associated with the establishment is more critical, in some cases even radical, and this leadership is conducting a campaign against civic service in the Arab community. This campaign will deter some of the youth, but it is important to note that the State will wage a counter-campaign, which will stress the benefits of service," explains Prof. Smooha. The full results of the survey will be presented at a conference which will take place at the University of Haifa tomorrow, on Thursday February 21, on the subject of civic service for Arabs in Israel.

The study, which was conducted towards the end of 2007, included 910 respondents who were divided into three groups: 500 men and women over age 23; 204 parents of 12-22 year-olds; 206 youth between the ages of 16-22. In addition, 78 members of the Israeli-Arab leadership were surveyed, including Knesset members, heads of local governments, office holders in political movements, journalists and others. This group was divided into public figures affiliated with the Jewish establishment and those unaffiliated with the Jewish establishment.

The results of the survey revealed that most of the Arab community is not familiar with civic service: 77.4 % of the total respondents reported a lack of familiarity with the program and 79.6% of the youths themselves reported knowing very little about the service which is actually meant for them. It seems that despite the aggressive campaign being waged by heads of the Arab community against civic service and recruitment activities conducted by the civic service administration, the community still has limited information about the initiative.

As the survey participants learned more details about the goals of the program and its benefits, their support increased considerably. Not only do the youth support voluntary civic service, but 71.9% of the men surveyed and 83.8% of the women support the concept. According to Prof. Smooha, the widespread support for civic service among women, mothers of young women and young women themselves indicates a strong aspiration to improve the status of Arab women. Most of the volunteers are young Arab women who see the service as an opportunity to be part of a meaningful project and for personal development. Support for civic service was also found to be high among supporters of Hadash (62.9%), Balad (77.6%) and other political parties that have voiced opposition to the service.

27.1% of the youth would volunteer even knowing that their family opposed the idea. 35% would volunteer despite opposition of local religious or non-religious leadership and 42% would still volunteer if the national Arab leadership in Israel expressed opposition.

68.1% of the Arab population justifies their support of civic service because volunteering contributes to the state and Israeli society and 89.7% support it because volunteering will promote equality between Arabs and Jews. Youths are less concerned with contributing to society - 50.6% reported this as the reason for their support - but advancing equality is almost as important as in the general population - 86.5%.

 85.8% of the general Arab population and 76.5% of the youth responded that the fact that, in their opinion, civic service will not bring about true equality is reason to oppose the service. 74.5% of the general Arab population and the youth fear that voluntary service will eventually become obligatory military service and 52.9% responded that the fact that the State organizes the program is reason to oppose it.

"It's hard to believe that the opposition of the leadership which is not affiliated with the Jewish establishment will cause the project to collapse.
If the civil service administration succeeds in reaching an understanding with the Arab leaders by including them in its operation, the project could achieve impressive results," summarized Prof. Smoocha.

A conference entitled: "Civic Service among the Arab-Palestinian Community in Israel" will take place on Thursday (21.2.08) at the University of Haifa. Participants include Dr. Reuven Gal, head of the civil service administration in the Prime Minister's office, academics and public officials from the Jewish and Arab Israeli communities.

IMRA - Independent Media Review and Analysis

Geen opmerkingen:

Een reactie posten