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Poll finds discrimination, sexual harassment remain problems to NYers

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WBFO News file photo by Eileen Buckley
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Siena College Research Institute released a race relations poll on this Martin Luther King Day. The poll finds 39 percent of New York voters say race relations in the state are excellent or good. However, it indicates two-thirds of the people polled believe minorities experience racial or ethnic discrimination. Pollster Steven Greenberg tells WBFO News he finds that to be a "very distributing number."

"When we asked voters, 'In the last year were you treated unfairly based on your race, ethnicity, general or sexual orientation?', a staggering 29 percent of New Yorkers say yes, they were personally were treated unfairly based on who they were,” Greenberg responded.

The results indicate race relations are a little better, 31 percent, than the last poll taken three years ago, but not by much.   

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Pollster Steven Greenberg explains questions asked about race relations.

Siena also asked voters about sexual harassment in the workplace in the midst of the #MeToo movement. More than one-third of women say they have been the victim of sexual harassment at work. Seventy-four percent of those surveyed said it is a significant problem in New York, while 20 percent said it was not.

“Those are two very distributing numbers," Greenberg said.

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Pollster Steven Greenberg said Siena also asked voters about sexual harassment in the workplace in the midst of the "#Me-Too" Movement.

“It’s clearly a serious problem and it’s just staggering, the numbers,” Greenberg replied. 

Greenberg noted this is the first time Siena has asked about sexual harassment in the workplace. 

"The whole #MeToo movement has taken on a life of its own. And what’s both encouraging and discouraging is the fact that three-quarters of New Yorkers recognize that sexual harassment in the workplace is a significant problem. It’s discouraging that so many people feel that it is, but clearly it is and so it’s encouraging that we recognize the problem,” remarked Greenberg.

Eight-hundred twenty-four New York State registered voters participated in the poll.  

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