While a third of the Israeli public supports the current restrictions imposed by the government and an additional 29% support putting additional measures into effect, trust in the Prime Minister's handling of the crisis has fallen to a new low. Most Israelis also believe that mass demonstrations should be banned during the lockdown.
"These days, are you worried that you or a family member will get infected with the coronavirus?
* As in the past, a large majority of respondents expressed fear of contracting Covid-19. However, despite this month’s increase in the numbers infected and in the numbers of deaths, the percentage of Israelis fearing infection is similar to last month, when the rates of infection and deaths were considerably lower.
Worried that they or their family members will be infected with the coronavirus (%, total sample)
"To what extent are you worried about your economic wellbeing in the foreseeable future?"
* The current survey reveals a slight increase in respondents’ concern for their economic future (from 56.5% to 61%), mostly among Jews (from 54% a month ago to 59% today).
Worried about their economic future (%, total sample)
Analysis of the degree of concern for one’s economic future by income groups indicates that while among those earning an average income, the degree of concern has remained stable, among those with above-average incomes --it has risen from 35% a month ago to 47% today. Even among those with below-average incomes, we found a rise in concern for the economic future (from 66% to 71%), although more moderate than among high-income earners.
Worried about their economic future (%, total sample, by income)
"To what extent do you trust in the Prime Minister to lead the effort against the coronavirus?"
* As the crisis continues, the rate of trust in Prime Minister Netanyahu with regard to his managing of the corona crisis is declining, and is currently at the lowest level since measurements on this question began(27%).
Trust Prime Minister Netanyahu’s management of the Corona crisis (%, total sample)
* The drop in trust in the Prime Minister can be noted both in the Jewish public (from 37.5% to 29.5%) and in the Arab public (from 21% to 15%).
* Analysis of the degree of trust in Netanyahu’s management of the crisis along the continuum of Jewish religious observance—ultra-Orthodox-secular—reveals a decline among all groups. The sharpest decline is among the ultra-Orthodox public (from 63% a month ago to 40.5% in the current survey). The decline among the ultra-Orthodox can be seen mainly among those who voted for the United Torah Judaism party in the last Knesset elections (from 69% a month ago to 31% today). Among Shas voters, trust in the Prime Minister has remained stable. (65.5%).
Trust Prime Minister Netanyahu’s management of the Corona crisis (%, Jews, by religious observance)
In this survey as in the previous one, most Israelis trust Prof. Ronni Gamzu, the national coronavirus project coordinator, albeit at a lower rate (51% today compared to 59.5% in August). Among Jews, 54% trust Gamzu, compared with 34% among Arabs.
* Most of the decline in trust in Prof. Gamzu can be seen among the ultra-Orthodox (from 58% a month ago to only 27% today).
Trust Prof. Gamzu, August and September 2020 (%, Jews, by religious observance)
"Are you optimistic or pessimistic about Israeli society’s ability to recover from the current crisis?"
* The erosion of the public's optimism in Israel’s ability to recover from the crisis continues. For the first time, less than half of the Jews and less than a third of the Arab public are optimistic in this regard.
Optimistic about Israeli society’s ability to recover from the current crisis (%, Jews and Arabs)
"What do you think about the restrictions that the Israeli government has set on public conduct to prevent infection with the corona virus?"
While in April, over 60% of Israelis thought government decisions about quarantine were appropriate, today the public is more or less divided into three: about a third rate them as appropriate, and similar percentages rate them as too strict or too lenient.
What do you think about the restrictions that the Israeli government has set on public conduct to prevent infection with the corona virus? (%, total sample, April and September 2020)
* Analysis of the responses by religious observance – from ultra-Orthodox- to secular – reveals that the most significant change occurred among the ultra-Orthodox. In April, a large majority among them (73%) rated the restrictions as appropriate, as compared with only about a third (35%) today. A similar—though less dramatic—change took place among the secular public as well: In April 57%, rated them as appropriate, as compared with only a quarter today.
"Due to the coronavirus epidemic, the number of worshipers in synagogues will be restricted on Yom Kippur. Do you intend to attend synagogue on Yom Kippur?”
* Apparently due to the corona threat and the restrictions imposed by the government, the percentage not planning to go to synagogue at all on Yom Kippur, increased significantly this year, as compared to last year (from 39% to 61%). Concurrently, there has been a decrease in the rate of those who plan to go to all the prayers, to some of the prayers, or even just to hear the blowing of the shofar at the end of the fast.
Do you intend to attend synagogue on Yom Kippur, 2019 and 2020 (%, Jews)
Analysis of the responses among Jews by religious observance (from ultra-Orthodox-to secular) shows that in all groups the percentages indicating that they would attend synagogue this year on Yom Kippur is lower than last year. Nevertheless, a majority of the religiously observant public (73% of the ultra-Orthodox, 66% of the traditional- religious, and 59% of the religious) report that they will attend synagogue on Yom Kippur, whether for all the prayers or just to hear the blowing of the shofar.
Plan to attend synagogue on Yom Kippur, 2019 and 2020 (%, Jews, by religious observance)
A peace accord or a war on Corona?
* We asked the respondents to indicate with which statement they agree more: "When there are serious internal problems like the corona crisis, the Prime Minister should address them and not deal with non-urgent foreign issues, like signing the peace accord with the UAE and Bahrain", or "No opportunity should be missed to sign a peace accord with an Arab country, even if at the same time there are serious internal problems such as the corona crisis." Most of the Israeli public agrees with the second statement--that no opportunity should be missed to sign peace accords even if we are in the midst of the corona crisis (57%), compared to less than a third (32%) who believe that the Prime Minister should focus exclusively on domestic issues, such as the corona crisis.
While a large majority of Jews believe that the opportunity to sign peace accords should not be missed (62%), only a minority of Arabs believe so (34%).
Should peace accords be promoted during the corona crisis? (%, Jews and Arabs)
* Analysis of the positions on the issue by the party the respondent voted for in the last election shows that in the right-wing parties (Likud and Yamina) and Shas there is a large majority who believe that peace accords should be signed even during the corona crisis. Only about half of Blue-White and Labor-Gesher-Meretz voters agree, as do less than a third of the voters for the Joint List.
Agree that "No opportunity should be missed to sign a peace accord with an Arab state, even if at the same time there are serious internal problems such as the corona crisis" (%, total by vote in last election)
Should demonstrations be allowed during the lockdown?
* A large majority of the public believes that in order to overcome the corona virus, a total lockdown must be maintained, including a ban on demonstrations (63%). Only a minority (29%) believe that, "Demonstrations are a fundamental right in a democracy and should be allowed to continue even during the lockdown."
* Analysis by the respondent’s party vote in the last Knesset elections shows that only among the voters of one party was there a majority in favor of holding demonstrations during the closure (Labor-Gesher-Meretz, 60%).
Demonstrations must be allowed during the lockdown (%, total sample, by vote in last election)
The Israel in the Time of Coronavirus 12 survey is a project of the Guttman Center for Public Opinion and Policy Research of the Israel Democracy Institute. In the survey, which was conducted on the internet and by telephone (to supplements the numbers of respondents among groups that are not sufficiently connected to the internet, on September 15-17 2020, 603 men and women were interviewed in Hebrew and 151 in Arabic, constituting a representative national sample of the entire adult population of Israel aged 18 and older. The maximum sampling error for the entire sample was 3.7%± at a confidence level of 95%. The fieldwork was conducted by the Rafi Smith Institute under the direction of Rafi Smith. For the full data file see: Data Israel