Gen Z Muslims in UK have similar experiences to non-Muslims, except on religiosity

A new poll has found that young Muslims and non-Muslims in the UK have largely similar views and experiences, including on Muslim representation, climate change, and personal finance. They only play with personal religious beliefs.

The survey interviewed around 2,000 British people aged 16 to 24, approximately half of whom were Muslim and half a representative sample of non-Muslims weighted by age, gender, region and religion.

It found that 65 per cent of “Generation Z” Muslims, born between the late 1990s and 2012, believed UK media coverage of Muslims was not accurate, slightly higher than the 51 per cent of non-Muslim Britons who agreed .

Meanwhile, 87 percent of Gen Z Muslims said employers should offer Muslim employees time off work for the Eid festival – a statement with which 62 percent of non-Muslims agreed.

Around half (48 per cent) of young Muslims are optimistic about dealing with the climate crisis, while 45 per cent of non-Muslims are.

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In terms of personal finance, the figures were almost the same.

Half (52 per cent) of young Muslims had some form of debt, while the figure was 56 per cent for non-Muslim Brits.

Meanwhile, 58 percent of Muslims considered their financial situation to be secure, compared to 56 percent nationally.

Two thirds (66 per cent) of Muslims believed they would own property by the time they reached 30, while 62 per cent of young non-Muslims believed the same.

The research was carried out by polling company Savanta from February 6-21, and commissioned by Hyphen, an online publication aimed at Muslims in the UK and Europe.

Religion and Islamophobia

Young British Muslims were more likely to take part in religious activities than their non-Muslim peers, according to the findings.

Nine in 10 (89 per cent) of Muslims aged 16 to 24 said they prayed at home, and 75 per cent said they regularly visit a mosque.

Among non-Muslims, 64 percent said they rarely or never prayed at home, and 66 percent rarely or never visited a place of worship.

A significant percentage (81 percent) of young Muslims said that religious leaders had an influence on their lives, compared to only 38 percent for non-Muslims.

About half of young Muslims have experienced Islamophobia – a question asked only of Muslims – at school (49 per cent) or in a social setting (47 per cent).

In both settings, women were more likely to experience Islamophobia than men.

Meanwhile, 45 per cent of young Muslims said they identified more with being Muslim than British, while only eight per cent said otherwise, while 43 per cent identified equally with both.

“It is what we can achieve [Generation Z] Muslims in the UK see their faith and national identity as intertwined,” said Burhan Wazir, editor of Hyphen.

“They live in a country they consider diverse and have the freedom to express their identity and beliefs, which all help give them the confidence to assert their full identity.”

He added that the survey showed the “shared lived experience” of young British Muslims and non-Muslims.

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