Residents of NJ are divided on whether the past decade has been good to them, with 30% saying life has improved, 34% saying it has worsened, and 31% believing nothing’s changed since 2000, according to a poll by the Monmouth University/Gannett New Jersey, released on Tuesday, Dec. 29.
But they’re an optimistic bunch, with about half expecting a better ten years ahead.
Among under-30s, two in five felt life had improved, while 25% thought it had gone south; among 30 to 50 year olds, 35% felt life had improved, 31% said it got worse. From that age upwards, NJians were less optimistic, with 44% of 50-69 year olds saying life had worsened, and just 24% who felt life got better. Of those 70 years and older, the majority, about 45% felt the quality of life remains the same, while 38% feel it has sunk.
The survey found that black and Hispanic New Jerseyans are more positive than white state residents about the past decade’s influence on their lives. About 4 in 10 black and Hispanic adults felt life had improved over the past ten years. Just 1 in 4 white residents felt this was so.
Among Hispanics, 35% found life has gotten worse, while 40% found it improved. Among white residents, 38% felt life had worsened, and 32% found it unchanged.
Optimism reigns among most NJ residents for the next decade, however, with 48% expecting improvement, 23% expecting no change, and just 18% expecting life to get worse. Among the optimistic, 7 in 10 are aged 18-29, while 52% are 30-49. Among those aged 50-69, 35% were hopeful for the next decade, and among those older than 70, just 29%.
66% of black NJ residents and 68% of Hispanics feel the next decade will bring an improvement in their lives, while 41% of whites and 49% of Asians felt the same.
Have your say in our own Baristaville poll.