Poll: 46% of Israelis fear poverty


Approximately half of Israelis, some 46 percent, fear that government policies will force them below the poverty line, according to a survey released Tuesday to mark the International Day for the Eradication of Poverty. Only 26% of the 500 Israelis surveyed said that they felt secure in their financial situation, according to the Forum poll. In terms of expenditure, 24% said that they had made cuts in the past year. This figure included those who had reduced their spending on food and medication. Just over three-quarters of respondents, making up 77%, said that the government is responsible for helping poor people escape the cycle of poverty. However, 19% put the blame on poor people themselves, saying that many have the outlook that they can live off welfare payments. In a statement responding to the survey's findings, Hadash MK Dov Henin said, "The results of the poll show that in Israel, the overwhelming majority of people fear for their fate, and don't agree with the government's turbo-capitalist conduct." "When a quarter of the Israeli population is living in poverty, it's a sign for the Israeli government that it's time to take responsibility, to stop fighting the poor and start fighting poverty," Henin went on.