Poll Shows: 93% of Chareidi Community Wear a Mask When Leaving Home

A man wears a protective face mask as he learns outdoors. (David Cohen/Flash90)

In a poll conducted by Israel’s Government Advertising Agency in recent days, the response of the chareidi community to the Health Ministry’s restrictions due to the coronavirus were examined among a representative sample of 741 people from the chareidi community.

To the first question in the poll, “How do you treat the global coronavirus pandemic and its impact in Israel these days?” 51.8% responded that “it is dangerous to everyone if we are not properly protected,” 36.1% responded that “it is very dangerous to everyone,” 10.8% said that “it is only dangerous for seniors and those at risk,” 0.9% believe that there is “no danger at all,” and 0.3% responded that they “don’t know.”

The second question asked was, “Do you think that when there are any symptoms of fever, cough or shortness of breath one should immediately seek medical help?” A resounding 93.2% responded, “It is important to know if I have coronavirus and therefore one should go immediately.” 2.8% said that they would “not go check, so they won’t be put into isolation,” 2.7% said they “don’t know” or refused to respond, and 1.2% said that “they would ignore the symptoms and it will pass alone.”

To the third question, which hasn’t been medically proven yet either way, “How should one treat coronavirus patients who have fully recovered?” 35.6% responded that “they fear that they can still catch the virus,” 26.8% responded that “they can be approached without fear, as they have developed antibodies and are not infectious,” 26.4% said that “in any case, it is better not to approach them,” and 11.2% didn’t know or refused to reply.

The respondents were also asked if they met or were hosted by friends in the last few days, to which 65% responded that “they have not met anyone outside their nuclear family in recent days,” 30% said that “they meet with friends, but keeping to the social-distancing rules,” 2.6% responded that “they have been meeting with friends without adhering to the restrictions,” and 2.4% declined to reply.

They were also asked, “How often have you stayed or met with  family in recent days?” to which 69% responded that ”they have not met with family in recent days,” 21.7% said that ”they only met once or twice,” 6.2% responded that they ”meet once a week at least,” 1.8% said that they ”meet times many unlimited,”and 1.4% refused to answer.

A resounding 93.2% of the respondents said that “every time they leave the house they don a face mask,” while only 3.7% responded that “the Health Ministry’s messages are unclear and they do not know when to wear a mask.” 2% replied that they ”are unable to wear a mask because it bothers them,” while 1.1% think that ”no mask is required and said they are careful and not afraid to get infected.”

Poll participants were also asked, “Do you keep to a social distance of 2 meters when meeting people who do not live with you, and avoid crowds?” 88.1% replied that they keep their social distance and avoid any congestion, 9.7% responded that “it is impossible in public places,” 1.2% responded that ”the messages are unclear and incomprehensible to them,” and 0.9% responded that “they do not think it is required; they are careful and not afraid to get infected.”

To the last question, “Do you maintain hygiene and wash your hands often?” 75.4% replied that they were “very careful about hand-washing according to the guidelines,” 22.1% replied that they are unable to remember and wash every time, 1.6% responded that they wear gloves and are careful not to become infected, while 0.9% responded that “the messages on the topic are not clear.”