Estonia among countries least accepting migrants
Estonia ranks among the ten countries that are least accepting of migrants, it appears from a survey taken by the polling agency Gallup.
Estonia scored 2.37 points in Gallup's new Migrant Acceptance Index, out of a possible 9.0, being ninth from the bottom overall and one of the ten countries that scored a 2.39 or lower.
According to the survey, the country the least accepting of migrants is Macedonia with a score of 1.47, followed by Montenegro, Hungary, Serbia, Slovakia, Israel, Latvia and the Czech Republic. Estonia, in ninth place, is followed by Croatia with a score of 2.39.
Gallup pointed out that many countries on the front lines of the recent migrant crisis in Europe are among the least-accepting countries in the world for migrants. Most of them, located along the Balkan route, that once channeled asylum seekers from Greece to Germany. Israel, which has dealt with its own influx of asylum seekers from Africa in the past decade, is the only non-european country that scored below 2.39 points.
Gallup created the Migrant Acceptance Index to gauge people's acceptance of migrants based on increasing degrees of personal proximity. The index is based on three questions that Gallup asked in 138 countries in 2016 and the U.S. in 2017.
Specifically, it asked people if they viewed immigrants living in their country, an immigrant becoming their neighbor, and an immigrant marrying one of their close relatives as "a good thing" or "a bad thing," with a volunteered response "it depends" or "don't know" as the third option. The response "a good thing" was worth three points, a volunteered response of "it depends" or "don't know" was worth one point, and "a bad thing" was worth zero points.
As opposed to the least-accepting countries, which are geographically and culturally clustered, the most-accepting countries for migrants are located in disparate parts of the globe. The top two mostaccepting countries could not be farther apart -- Iceland with a score of 8.26, and New Zealand with a score of 8.25.
However, a common thread tying many of the most-accepting countries together is their long history as receiving countries for migrants. While the highest-receiving country in the world, the U.S., does not make the top 10 countries, it does make the top 20 with a score of 7.27.
Worldwide, adults in certain demographics are solidly more accepting of migrants than others are. For example, acceptance rises with education. Those with at least four years of education after high school or with college degrees are the most likely of all education groups to be accepting, with an index score of 5.67. Those in the highest 20 per cent income group -- who are also more likely to have higher education -- also stand out in their acceptance of migrants, compared with those in all lower income groups. Residents of urban areas also are more likely to be accepting, as opposed to those living in rural areas, it appears from the outcome of the survey.