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Churches Least Likely to Embrace Diverse Opinions, Adults Say

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U.S. adults see churches and religious organizations as the least likely institutions to be open to a diversity of perspectives, according to a Pew Research Center report published June 19.

Assessing views on the state of political discourse and dialogue, one question in Pew’s survey focused on openness to diversity among five institutions: churches and religious organizations; colleges and universities; community colleges; K-12 public schools; local communities.

Respondents felt that U.S. churches and religious organizations were the least “open to a wide range of opinions and viewpoints,” with a total of 48% saying they are “very open” or “somewhat open” to such diversity (10% very open; 38% somewhat open).

This was the lowest percentage total among the surveyed institutions, and the only institution with less than 50% of adults affirming they are either very or somewhat open to diversity.

Local communities were seen as the most likely places to embrace diverse opinions (14% very open; 60% somewhat open), followed by community colleges (22% very open; 51% somewhat open), colleges and universities (25% very open; 43% somewhat open), and K-12 public schools (12% very open; 49% somewhat open).

The full report is available here.