People are more prejudiced about religion than ethnicity, race or nationality, new research has shown.
The Woolf Institute’s two-year study on diversity, How We Get Along, will tomorrow conclude that people are more intolerant of people’s religion than any other identity elements, the Guardian reported.
The study surveyed 11,700 people in England and Wales and found that people from other faiths are the most prejudiced about Muslims but Muslims are also most likely to have negative attitudes about other religions.
Researchers used the question of marriage to determine tolerance and prejudice.
Only 43% of non-black or Asian respondents were okay with their family members marrying a Muslim with about three-quarters saying they had no problem with relatives marrying a black or Asian person.
The majority of Hindus, Sikhs, Jews, Buddhists who were surveyed said they would not want loved ones to marry into a Muslim family with only a minority of surveyed Christians saying the same thing.
Likewise the majority of Muslims questioned did not want family members marrying a Buddhist, Hindu, Jewish, Sikh or person with no religion whilst almost four in 10 Muslims were uncomfortable with relatives marrying Christians.
The study also found that prejudice within minority communities were experiencing generational shifts.
More younger British Muslim women were exercising more freedom to decide who to marry, when they want to marry and how they want to marry.
People over 75-years-old are more likely to be prejudiced about people from other religions along with people who have few or no educational qualifications, people from non-Asian ethnic minorities and Baptists.
There is more chance of men being averse to inter-religious, ethnic or national marriages than women.
The study concluded that religion is a ‘red line’ for many people in England and Wales.
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