Attitudes About Family, Law, Women and the Judiciary System in Palestinian Society


Number of Children Perceived as "Ideal" for a Family to Have, Gallup (December 26, 2005 to January 8, 2006)

Palestine
(West Bank/
East Jerusalem,
Gaza Strip)

Israel

 

Total

Jewish

Not Jewish

%

%

%

%

7 or more

14

4

4

4

5 to 6

33

13

13

10

3 to 4

43

68

68

69

1 to 2

10

15

14

17

None

1

*

*

0

 

 

 

 

Mean

4.7

3.7

3.7

3.7

Palestinians: Preferred Number of Children According to Region, Gallup (December 26, 2005 to January 8, 2006)

West Bank

East Jerusalem

Gaza Strip

%

%

%

7 or more

9

10

21

5 to 6

34

18

33

3 to 4

46

56

35

1 to 2

10

14

10

None

1

2

1

 

 

 

Mean

4.5

4.1

5.1

If a family discovers that one of its daughters is involved in a case of family disgrace (e.g. adultery).  What do you think how should the family behave in such a case? (Palestinian Center for Public Opinion, June 14-19, 2005)

Kill the daughter as to remove the disgrace

23.5%

Conceal what happened and not show her up

34.4%

Marry her off to one of her relatives

17.4%

Abandon her and cut the relationship with her

5.4%

Advise her as to avoid the repetition

13.6%

Otherwise

5.7%

The Palestinian Legislative Council has carried out on 21.10.2004 a reading followed by an amendment of the Women's Quota paragraph, which grants both genders 20%-quota of the seats in the local and municipal elections. Are you with or against this amendment? (Palestinian Center for Public Opinion, November 4 - 8, 2004)

with
41.8%
Against
35.2%
Don't know
23.0%

Palestinian Children's attitudes to women and minorities: (Al-Ayyam, Feb. 19, 2004)

Limiting Women's Occupations:
"73% [Grades 9 and 12] agree to limit women's work to traditional occupations."
"16% [Grade 12] support women's right to work as taxi drivers."

Limiting Women's Freedom
"33% [Grade 12] believe that hitting a woman is permissible under specified circumstances."
"23% [Grade 9] do not accept a woman has the right to chose a life companion freely."
"32% [Grade 9] do not accept a woman's right to chose her own clothes."

Limiting Women's Political Involvement:
"52% [Grade 9] do not accept that women can have positions on a Municipal Local Council."
"37% [Grade 9] do not accept women's right to vote in elections."

Children's attitudes to different races, religion, sex and handicapped
"60% [Grade 12] expressed unwillingness to choose a friend who is not of their religion."
"24% [Grade 12] do not welcome the idea of friendship with others, who have a different skin color."
"51% [Grade 12] are not willing to choose a friend who is not of their sex."
"9% [Grade 12] do not welcome the idea of friendship with people from other countries."
"No more than 60% [Grade 9 and 12] favor handicapped rights in the areas of occupation, education, and presenting candidacy for elections."

Have you used the Shari'a or ecclesiastical family courts in the last year? (Source: JMCC Poll, March 2000) 

 
Total 
West Bank
Gaza Strip
n= 1200
n=762
n=438
Yes
18.8
15.2
24.9 
No
80.3
83.3
75.1
No answer
0.9
1.5
0.0

If yes, for what purposes?* (Source: JMCC Poll, March 2000) 
 
 Total
West Bank
Gaza Strip
 
n=225
n=116
n=109
Marriage
45.8
38.8
53.2
Dowry claims
2.2
0.9
3.7
Maintenance
1.8
1.7
1.8
Divorce (any kind)
8.0
10.3
5.5
Separation (any kind)
0.9
0.9
0.9
Child custody
3.6
4.3
2.8
Inheritance
17.8
25.0
10.1
Marriage and Divorce (any kind)
3.6
0.9
6.4
Marriage and inheritance
4.9
5.2
4.6
Divorce and Child custody
1.3
1.7
0.9
Other 
4.8
3.4
5.5
No answer
5.3
6.9
4.6
* This question was asked to those who answered "yes" in question no. 1

Were you satisfied with the courts treatment of the case?* (Source: JMCC Poll, March 2000) 
 
Total 
West Bank
Gaza Strip
n= 225
n=116
n=109
No satisfied 
71.3
31.9
20.3 
Satisfied 
26.1
65.5
77.0
No answer
2.6
2.6
2.7
* This question was asked to those who answered "yes" in question no. 1

If so, Why?* (Source: JMCC Poll, March 2000) 
 
Total 
West Bank
Gaza Strip
n=80
n=50
n=30
It was not fair to the woman involved
7.5
8.0
 6.7
It was not fair to the man involved
3.8
6.0
0.0
The court did not make a decision 
33.8
32.0
36.7
The court did not work professionally
27.5
28.0
26.7
Other
9.9
14.0
3.3
No answer
17.5
12.0
26.6
* This question was asked to those who answered "yes" in question no. 1, and to those who answered "not satisfied"  in question no. 3

Were you satisfied with the court's ability to enforce judgements?* (Source: JMCC Poll, March 2000) 
 
Total 
West Bank
Gaza Strip
n= 225
n=116
n=109
No satisfied
30.2
38.8
21.1 
Satisfied
63.5
56.1
71.6
No answer
6.3
5.1
7.3
* This question was asked to those who answered "yes" in question no.1

According to your direct or indirect knowledge, do the Shari'a [or ecclesiastical] courts protect and support women's right?* (Source: JMCC Poll, March 2000) 
 
Total 
West Bank
Gaza Strip
n= 964
n=635
n=329
Yes
66.9
65.4
 69.9
No
22.2
21.1
23.7
No answer
11.1
13.5
6.4
* This question was asked to those who answered "no" in question no. 1

According to your direct and indirect knowlege, do the Shari'a courts [or ecclesiastical] protect and support men's rights? (Source: JMCC Poll, March 2000)  
 
Total 
West Bank
Gaza Strip
n= 1200
n=762
n=438
Yes
72.8
74.5
69.6 
No
17.0
14.5
21.7
No answer
10.2
11.0
8.7

Q.8 According to your direct and indirect knowledge, do the Sharia'a courts [or ecclesiastical] protect and support children's rights? (Source: JMCC Poll, March 2000)
 
 
Total 
West Bank
Gaza Strip
n= 1200
n=762
n=438
Yes
66.1
65.1
67.8 
No
19.5
19.0
20.3
No answer
14.4
15.9
11.9

Currently, Muslim Palestinians are subject to two family laws, one in the West Bank and one in Gaza. Do you think there is a need for a unified Palestinian family law? (Source: JMCC Poll, March 2000) 
 
Total 
West Bank
Gaza Strip
n= 1200
n=762
n=438
Yes
75.1
76.8
72.1 
No
14.8
10.1
23.1
No answer
10.1
13.1
4.8

Do you think family law should respond to changes and new needs in Palestinian society? (Source: JMCC Poll, March 2000)
 
Total 
West Bank
Gaza Strip
n= 1200
n=762
n=438
Yes
78.9
77.2
82.0 
No
12.7
12.7
12.5
No answer
8.4
10.1
5.5

Do you favor more, the same of less rights for women than the family law currently in force in your place of residence? (Source: JMCC Poll, March 2000)
 
Total 
West Bank
Gaza Strip
n= 1200
n=762
n=438
Women should be given more rights
49.2
51.7
 44.7
Women should be given less rights
5.0
3.8
7.3
Current rights are enough
39.8
38.8
41.4
No answer
6.0
5.7
6.6

Who do you think should be mainly responsible for developing a unified Palestinian family law? (Source: JMCC Poll, March 2000) 
 
Total 
West Bank
Gaza Strip
n= 1200
n=762
n=438
Palestinian Legislative Coucil
16.7
15.2
19.2 
Shari'a court judges only
26.2
27.8
23.3
The president
12.1
13.5
9.6
The society should vote
33.4
30.1
39.3
The current law shouldn't be changed 
3.3
3.7
2.5
The Holy Koran
1.2
0.8
1.8
Others
0.8
0.8
1.3
No answer
6.3
8.1
3.0

Under which circumstances, do you think women should be given the right to be divorced or legally separated from their husband? (Source: JMCC Poll, March 2000)
 
Total 
West Bank
Gaza Strip
n= 1200
n=762
n=438
1- Husband has abandoned family
1.2
1.7
 0.2
2- Husband physically abuses wife
1.1
1.4
0.5
3- Husband physically abuses children
0.3
0.4
0.0
4- Husband has a sexual disease
0.8
1.2
0.0
5- Husband is mentally ill
1.6
1.7
1.4
6- Husband is an collaborator
3.2
2.6
4.1
7- If he marries another woman
1.6
2.5
0.0
8- Women should'nt be given the right to be divorced or legally separated in any cirumstances
4.2
4.1
4.3
5+6
5.8
5.6
5.9
1+2+3+4+5+6+7
10.6
13.3
5.9
4+5+6
3.0
2.5
3.9
1+4+5+6
3.3
3.9
2.3
1+6
3.8
3.5
4.3
1+2+3+4+5+6
4.9
5.2
4.3
1+2+5+6
3.2
3.8
2.1
1+5+6
3.7
2.8
5.3
1+2+3+5+6
3.1
2.6
3.9
2+5+6
2.1
0.7
4.6
2+6
2.8
3.4
1.6
2+3+4+5+6
1.8
2.0
1.4
4+5
1.4
1.2
1.8
1+2+5
1.3
1.7
0.7
1+2+4+5
1.3
1.4
0.9
1+2+3
1.5
2.0
0.7
3+5+6
1.4
1.4
1.4
1+2+4+5+6
1.8
0.7
3.7
1+2+4+5+6+7
1.3
1.6
0.9
1+5
1.9
2.0
1.8
1+2+4+5+6
1.3
0.0
3.4
1+2+6
1.8
1.6
2.1
2+3+4+6
1.3
1.8
0.2
2+5
1.0
1.0
0.9
1+2+3+4+5
1.0
1.2
0.7
1+4+6
1.0
0.0
2.7
Others
16.8
15.9
20.5
No answer
1.8
2.0
1.6

Recently in Egypt a law passed enabling women to ask for divore if they waive their financial rights. Would you like to see a similar law passed in Palestine? (Source: JMCC Poll, March 2000) 
 
Total 
West Bank
Gaza Strip
n= 1200
n=762
n=438
I agree
32.3
35.6
26.7 
Disagree
60.4
55.4
69.2
No answer
7.3
9.0
4.1

If such law is enabled in Palestine Why do you support it?* (Source: JMCC Poll, March 2000) 
 
Total 
West Bank
Gaza Strip
n= 388
n=271
n=117
Enables women to ask for divorce 
84.0
88.6
 73.5
Women should waive her financial rights 
11.6
8.1
19.7
No answer
4.4
3.3
6.8
* This question was asked to those who answered "agree" in question no. 14.

Do you oppose this law because:* (Source: JMCC Poll, March 2000) 
 
Total 
West Bank
Gaza Strip
n= 725
n=422
n=303
Enables women to ask for divorce
50.3
49.3
51.8
Women should waive her financial rights 
40.6
41.2
39.6
No answer
9.1
9.5
8.6
* This question was asked to those who answered "disagree" in question no. 14

As you know, Palestinian males and females of 18 years and abve have the right in choosing their spouse, do you think: (Source: JMCC Poll, March 2000)
 
 
Total 
West Bank
Gaza Strip
n= 1200
n=762
n=438
Both (18 years old) males and females should have equal level of freedom in choosing their spouses
49.2
49.5
 48.8
Male should have more freedom in choosing their spouses than females
10.3
10.0
11.0
Females should have more freedom in choosing their husbands than males
4.7
4.8
4.3
The freedom of both (sexes) should be limited
34.0
34.3
33.6
No answer
1.8
1.4
2.3

Do you think Palestinian young men under eighteen are mature enough to independently choose their spouses? (Source: JMCC Poll, March 2000) 
 
Total 
West Bank
Gaza Strip
n= 1200
n=762
n=438
Yes
13.6
11.8
16.7 
No
84.8
86.1
82.4
No answer
1.6
2.1
0.9

Do you think Palestinian young women under seventeen are mature enough to independently choose their spouses? (Source: JMCC Poll, March 2000) 
 
Total 
West Bank
Gaza Strip
n= 1200
n=762
n=438
Yes
8.9
9.8
 7.3
No
89.3
88.5
90.6
No answer
1.8
1.7
2.1

Should the age of marriage for young women and men be raised to 18? (Source: JMCC Poll, March 2000) 
 
Total 
West Bank
Gaza Strip
n= 1200
n=762
n=438
Yes
48.7
58.1
 84.0
No
11.8
11.8
11.6
No answer
3.5
3.1
4.4

Do you think the law can do more to ensure that a husband's income is spent for family welfare? (Source: JMCC Poll, March 2000)
 
Total 
West Bank
Gaza Strip
n= 1200
n=762
n=438
Yes
82.8
85.7
77.6 
No
11.5
8.8
16.5
No answer
5.7
5.5
5.9

Do you think women should contribute to family income, if possible? (Source: JMCC Poll, March 2000) 
 
Total 
West Bank
Gaza Strip
n= 1200
n=762
n=438
Yes
81.0
82.7
78.0 
No
16.3
15.2
18.3
No answer
2.7
2.1
3.7

For couples who prefer civil law, without affecting other peoples rights to use Shari'a courts? (Source: JMCC Poll, March 2000) 
 
Total 
West Bank
Gaza Strip
n= 1200
n=762
n=438
Yes
17.1
17.5
16.7 
No
56.7
55.6
58.4
No answer
26.2
26.9
24.9

 

Do you believe that women will have an equal opportunity in running for the elections? (Source: JMCC Poll, December 1995)

  Total West Bank Gaza Strip
Yes they will 55.6 56.0 54.7
No they will not 31.8 32.3 30.6
No opinion 12.6 11.7 14.7

Did you vote for a female candidate? (Source: JMCC Poll, February 1996)

  Total West Bank Gaza Strip
Yes 35.8 28.5 48.9
No 56.9 62.1 47.5
No answer 7.3 9.4 3.6

Why didn't you vote for a female candidate? (Source: JMCC Poll, February 1996)

  Total West Bank Gaza Strip
None were qualified 46.2 36.0 69.9
No female candidate in my constituency 25.2 34.8 2.8
I was pressured to vote for other candidates 5.0 6.4 1.7
Other 23.6 22.8 25.6

Do you believe in the importance of having women in the legislative council? (Source: JMCC Poll, February 1996)

  Total West Bank Gaza Strip
Yes 68.4 72.6 60.7
No 16.8 15.9 18.5
No opinion 14.8 11.5 20.8

Why don't you believe in having women for the legislative council? (Source: JMCC Poll, February 1996)

  Total West Bank Gaza Strip
Men can represent women's needs 37.1 31.7 45.2
No difference between the needs of men and women 10.0 9.5 10.7
Not qualified for this position 30.0 26.2 35.7
Other 22.9 32.6 8.4

Why do you think there is a need for women in the council? (Source: JMCC Poll, February 1996)

  Total West Bank Gaza Strip
Women need to demand their rights 49.4 47.1 54.5
Better for democracy 37.2 37.5 36.6
Other 13.4 15.4 8.9

What is your opinion about the strike of female security prisoners? Do you support it, somewhat support it, or oppose it? (Source: JMCC Poll, February 1996)

  Total West Bank Gaza Strip
Support it 62.2 61.7 63.2
Somewhat support it 18.3 17.3 20.1
Oppose it 13.0 14.9 9.6
No opinion 6.5 6.1 7.1

Have you decided to vote for candidates without consulting anyone, or after taking the advice of others, or what? (Source: JMCC Poll, February 1996)

  Total West Bank Gaza Strip
Without consulting anyone 60.6 61.6 58.9
After taking advice of others 23.7 19.1 31.9
Others 7.0 8.7 4.0
No opinion 8.7 10.7 5.1

Do you think it is important to incorporate personal status laws (including those pertaining to divorce, inheritance and marriage) into the Palestinian constitution? (Source: JMCC Poll, December 1995)

  Total West Bank Gaza Strip
Yes 52.4 53.9 49.4
No 29.5 29.9 28.6
No opinion 18.1 16.2 22.0

If the answer to the previous question is no, then why not? (Source: JMCC Poll, December 1995)

This question was asked only to those who said that personal status laws should not be incorporated in the Palestinian Constitution. n=399

  Total West Bank Gaza Strip
Shari'a Law is sufficient to govern these matters 81.7 83.7 77.2
Such laws are not important enough to be included in the constitution 8.3 6.9 11.4
Other reasons 3.0 2.5 4.1
No opinion 7.0 6.9 7.3

Do you think that there is a need to integrate personal status laws in the Palestinian Constitution? (Source: JMCC Poll, February 1996)

  Total West Bank Gaza Strip
Yes 48.4 52.7 40.8
No 42.1 37.2 50.9
No opinion 9.5 10.1 8.3

If no, why do you oppose this?

  Total West Bank Gaza Strip
Because Sharia law is sufficient 91.6 94.4 87.3
These issues are not sufficiently important to be included in the constitution 6.9 4.2 10.8
Others 1.5 1.4 1.9

Please indicate whether you strongly support, somewhat support or strongly oppose the following statements

Women deserve a quota in the elected council.
(Source: JMCC Poll, December 1995)

  Total West Bank Gaza Strip
Strongly agree 60.1 59.9 60.5
Agree somewhat 17.1 17.8 15.7
Strongly disagree 15.2 15.4 14.7
No opinion 7.6 6.9 9.1

Do you think that women deserve a quota for representation in the council? (Source: JMCC Poll, February 1996)

  Total West Bank Gaza Strip
Support it 45.4 48.0 40.8
Somewhat support it 17.4 15.1 21.4
Oppose it 22.0 26.3 14.3
No opinion 15.2 10.6 23.4

Christians deserve a quota in the elected council. (Source: JMCC Poll, December 1995)

  Total West Bank Gaza Strip
Strongly Agree 48.2 50.9 42.5
Agree somewhat 21.4 21.9 20.3
Strongly disagree 19.2 18.1 21.5
No opinion 11.2 9.1 15.7

Palestinian women's organizations provide women with useful information in a timely manner. (Source: JMCC Poll, December 1995)

  Total West Bank Gaza Strip
Strongly agree 27.7 28.9 25.3
Agree somewhat 20.6 20.8 20.3
Strongly disagree 13.0 13.8 11.1
No opinion 38.7 36.5 43.3

I believe I have a civic responsibility to take part in the elections. (Source: JMCC Poll, December 1995)

  Total West Bank Gaza Strip
Strongly agree 72.7 73.3 71.4
Agree somewhat 9.0 8.8 9.6
Strongly disagree 7.5 8.0 6.6
No opinion 10.8 9.9 12.4

If a woman candidate met my standards of proper qualifications, I would vote for her. (Source: JMCC Poll, December 1995)

  Total West Bank Gaza Strip
Strongly Agree 67.4 68.3 65.3
Agree somewhat 12.2 12.5 11.6
Strongly disagree 13.2 12.7 14.2
No opinion 7.2 6.5 8.9

Do you support or oppose the need for qualified women to be entitled for equal opportunities to participate actively in public responsibilities in society? (Source: JMCC Poll, December 1995)

  Total West Bank Gaza Strip
Support 75.4 75.4 75.2
Oppose 17.3 16.7 18.5
No opinion 7.3 7.9 6.3

If you disagree, then why?

This question is asked only to those who said disagree in the previous question (Source: JMCC Poll, December 1995)

  Total West Bank Gaza Strip
I believe women should only take care of family and homes 25.6 23.7 29.6
Because of religion 17.4 20.3 11.3
Women should not have social contact with outside of their immediate family 6.4 6.8 5.6
Women are not as capable as men to handle those kinds of tasks 42.5 42.6 42.3
Other reasons 3.7 2.0 7.0
No opinion 4.4 4.6 4.2


Source: JMCC - Jerusalem Media & Communications Centre