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Nearly half of Americans think Black people face a lot of discrimination, survey says

A new survey shows that 80% of Americans believe there is “some” or “a lot” of discrimination against Black people. Seventy-six percent say the same about Hispanic people, while 70% hold the same view about Asian people.

Pew said it conducted the survey between March 1 and March 7, before the killings of six Asian women in the Atlanta area this week.

Participants were asked to mark how much discrimination different ethnic groups — Black people, Hispanic people, White people and Asian people — faced, either “a lot,” “some,” “only a little” or “none at all.”

Nearly half of respondents, 46%, said Black people face “a lot” of discrimination — a number that has gone up from 2017, when only 39% of respondents said the same.

About 30% of respondents said Hispanic people face “a lot” of discrimination, and 27% said the same about Asian people. For Hispanic people, that number has gone down from 2017, when 34% said they face “a lot” of discrimination. Pew did not provide previous data regarding discrimination against Asian people.

Parameters for what constituted “a lot” of discrimination versus “some” discrimination were not specified by Pew.

But 40% of respondents also said White people face at least “some” discrimination, with 14% saying White people face “a lot” of discrimination, Pew said. Most people who said that were White, Pew said, with about half of White adult respondents saying White people face at least some discrimination.

The survey also looked beyond racial discrimination. It asked respondents about discrimination faced by Muslims, gay and lesbian people, women, Jewish people, and Evangelical Christians.

“Majorities of Americans say that Muslims, Jews, gays and lesbians, and women all face at least some discrimination in today’s society, while fewer than half (44%) say that Evangelical Christians face some or a lot of discrimination,” Pew said.

The data comes after a wave of racial reckoning in the US following the deaths of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery and Breonna Taylor last year, as well as in the midst of the Covid-19 pandemic, which has disproportionately affected Black and brown people.

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