Greeks are more inclined to empathize with migrants than to blame them for their own misfortunes, according to a report by international non-profit 'More in Common'. The findings, following the surveying of 2,000 people. come at a time when Greece continues to struggle across areas of EU relations and domestic politics.
The organization claimed that Greeks express “substantial empathy for the recent newcomers,” who are seen as hard-working and well-intentioned.
Despite their scepticism, compared to other Europeans, Greeks show positive attitudes towards refugees rooted in a culture of solidarity and compassion.
According to the report, 77 percent believe that migrants are willing to work harder and for lower pay than Greeks, and more than half (56 percent) believe that migrants make efforts to integrate into Greek society.
The organization added that feelings toward migrants are “warmer” in Greece than in other European countries where it has conducted similar surveys.
Some interesting numbers from the survey demonstrating that despite all, philotimo in Greece remains.
• At the personal level, a much larger number of Greeks feel ‘warm’ towards refugees (56 per cent) than ‘cold’ (17 per cent), with 27 per cent neutral. Feelings about migrants in general are slightly less ‘warm’ (50 per cent ‘warm’ to 20 per cent ‘cold’)...
• Fifty per cent have made a donation of money, food, clothing, or other items in the past year to support refugees.
• Forty per cent report knowing a refugee personally, and 38 per cent know someone who does voluntary work for refugees.
• An overwhelming 94 per cent of the population agrees that when the government makes laws, the number one principle should be ensuring that everyone is treated fairly.
• Sixty-eight per cent are worried about increasing levels of racism and discrimination.
• Most reject the idea of sending minors back to their country of origin (only 15 per cent agree that refugees who are children arriving without any family should be sent back home.)