NEW YORK (BUSINESS WIRE) -- The AOL Time Warner Foundation and PEOPLE En Espanol today announced the results of their joint national Hispanic Opinion Tracker (HOT)(TM) Study, one of the largest national surveys ever comparing views of Hispanics and non-Hispanics.
The study shows that Hispanics continue to embrace their own families, heritage and identity as they become an increasing force in American life.
The survey was conducted by the Cheskin Group, a leading national firm for research into multicultural communities with 20 years of experience in Hispanic surveys.
Cheskin surveyed 6,000 respondents nationwide on topics from the serious to the routine, from fear of terrorism to favorite movie genres. PEOPLE En Espanol has undertaken the study since 1999.
Overall, the survey found 95 percent of Hispanic respondents backing bilingual education, even as two states consider ballot initiatives this year to curtail the practice. Sixty-nine percent of Hispanics said they speak Spanish at home, and 62 percent said they prefer speaking Spanish to English.
At the same time, Hispanic respondents were focused on routes to success in America, and view education as critical. Eighty-seven percent said "education is the key to my child's success," and 64 percent said that they "wish they could have stayed in school longer" compared to 31 percent of non-Hispanics.
The survey's responses on national issues also showed disparities. Overall, it found Hispanics continuing to identify themselves largely as Democrats, 53 percent vs.
17 percent Republican. In addition, there are anywhere from 25 to 50 point gaps between Hispanics and Non-Hispanics on key national issues.
-- Seventy-three percent of Hispanics rated "allocating funds for building affordable housing" extremely or very important, while only 39 percent of non-Hispanics rated it as such.
-- Seventy percent of Hispanics said "appointing a Hispanic/Minority to the U.S. Supreme Court" was extremely or very important, versus only 22 percent of non-Hispanics.
-- Sixty-four percent of Hispanic respondents rated "providing an AIDS relief package to Latin American countries" as extremely or very important, against only 16 percent of non-Hispanics.
As a group, Hispanics also had strongly held views on public policy issues that relate to protecting their children and families. For example:
-- Eighty-one percent of Hispanics rated "childcare assistance" as extremely or very important, versus 35 percent of non-Hispanics.
-- Sixty-five percent of Hispanics said the same of "assist impoverished countries" versus 10 percent of non-Hispanics.
-- "Gun control" was rated extremely or very important by 71 percent of Hispanics versus 36 percent of non-Hispanics.
-- "After school programs" - 74 percent Hispanic versus 39 percent non-Hispanic.
-- "Police-community relations" - 84 percent Hispanic versus 57 percent non-Hispanic.
-- Forty-four percent of Hispanic respondents said that drug use was the "most widespread challenge facing youth in the United States today."
Lisa Quiroz, Publisher of PEOPLE En Espanol, said, "We created the HOT study because there was a tremendous need for research within the Hispanic market. We are currently in our third year and the study continues to provide the magazine and its advertisers with an in-depth look into this burgeoning market. The past success of the HOT study has inspired the AOL Time Warner Foundation and six other AOLTW divisions to partner with us this year. As we've expanded the survey, we've grown to see the study has value as an important snapshot of Hispanic-Americans as a whole."
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