Attitudes towards foreigners

The figures below give an indication of how foreign nationals living in Switzerland are perceived by the population. They gauge attitudes  towards statements that are deliberately provocative. In so doing, they indicate the level of openness of the population, by focusing on the attitudes toward foreigners' rights and on their behaviours - both real and imaginary.

In general, the population is tolerant. 67% are against sending back foreign nationals to their country of origin when jobs become scarce, 61% are for the family reunification of foreigners who have lived for at least five years in Switzerland and 57% are for the automatic naturalisation of the 2nd generation. 47% think that foreigners should have the right to take part in politics and 52% are against that idea.

71% of the population said they disagreed with the idea that foreigners make the streets seem unsafe (+6 percentage points compared to 2016). 70% stated that the presence of foreigners in the classroom does not have a negative effect on the education of Swiss children. 70% rejected the claim that foreigners are responsible for any increase in the unemployment rate. 66% thought that foreign nationals do the work that Swiss natives do not want to do and 64% that they are necessary for the economy. The population is divided over the statement that they take advantage of social benefits: 51% reject it (+6 percentage points compared to 2016) and 47% agree with it (-6 percentage points compared to 2016).

Further information

Tables

Sources

Contact

Federal Statistical Office Section Demography and Migration
Espace de l'Europe 10
CH-2010 Neuchâtel
Switzerland

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