Survey shows crime and economy are top concerns for Houstonians

ByPatrina Adger KTRK logo
Wednesday, May 18, 2022
Survey shows crime, economy are top concerns for Houstonians
With the COVID-19 pandemic waning, public health is not as concerning as it was last year.

HARRIS COUNTY, Texas (KTRK) -- The 41st Kinder Houston area survey, an assessment of Harris County residents' top-of-mind concerns, was released on Tuesday.

The Kinder Institute released the results during its first in-person luncheon since 2019.

The economy and crime are at the top of residents' concerns in this year's Kinder Houston Area Survey.

This is the last year Stephen Klineberg will be directly involved in the survey he launched four decades ago.

Economic problems were said to be the most significant problem people face in the Houston area, according to the 28% of over 1,900 people who answered the survey.

This was followed by crime at 25%, up from 14%.

With the COVID-19 pandemic waning, public health is not as concerning as last year.

"About 50% fewer than ever before in this optimistic city leaders say they are only interested in doing better three or four years down the road," Klineberg said. "It's a new kind of anxiety and insecurity. There's an understanding of the critical importance of education and preparing people for jobs in the 21st century. A new opportunity for Houstonians and Houston leadership to make the investments that we know we need to make to ensure Houston's success in that new knowledge-based global economy of the 21st century."

According to the survey, 36% of people's financial situation has gotten better since last year, but only 50% expected to be better off three or four years down the road.

Although, 29% say they would have a hard time coming up with $400 if an emergency occurred.

There was a significant disparity in the results based on race and ethnicity, with 23% saying they could not make at least one rent or mortgage payment during the past year, with a deep disparity based on race.

Houstonians are still feeling the impact of COVID as they continue dealing with stress, anxiety, loneliness, and isolation.

Nearly half of the survey takers said they were not getting enough sleep and exercise as they did before the pandemic.

Regarding national issues, specifically Roe v. Wade, 64% of Houstonians said they support a woman's right to choose an abortion "if she wants one for any reason."

If the woman's health is seriously in danger, 92% support the right to choose an abortion.

The survey also explored racial inequalities when it comes to public schools.

This year's survey recorded a rise in support for providing more money to public schools.

The number has jumped from 59% in 2018 and 67% in this year's survey.