Published February 24, 2017
While the largest portion of Icelanders believe “a comfortable number” of asylum seekers are granted asylum, a larger percentage believe more asylum seekers should be allowed to settle here than those who believe we have too many.
The poll, conducted by Market and Media Research (MMR), shows that 45% of respondents believe Iceland grants a “reasonable” number of asylum seekers asylum already. At the same time, 30.9% believe we do not grant enough people asylum, while only 24.1% believe we grant asylum to too many.
Broken down by demographics, women were more likely than men to believe too few are granted asylum. Icelanders between the ages of 18 and 49 were significantly more tolerant of asylum seekers than those aged 50 to 67, while those over the age of 68 were significantly more tolerant than this age bracket. Greater levels of tolerance were also directly proportionate to the level of education completed, with university graduates the most tolerant of all education levels.
In terms of employment, specialists and students were the most tolerant, while corporate heads, high-ranking officials and blue collar workers were the least so. Interestingly, those earning more than 1 million ISK per month were the most likely to believe we need to accept more asylum applications.
Where politics is concerned, voters for the Progressive Party and the Independence Party showed single-digit levels of support for granting more people asylum, at 7% and 8% respectively. Voters for all other parties reported levels of at least 40% believing more asylum seekers should be allowed to settle in Iceland, with Pirate Party voters ranking the highest, at 57%.
The poll was conducted from February 10 to 15, with 908 Icelanders responding in all.