[Excerpt] We New Haveners tend to mistrust neighbors and fear walking at night more than our suburban neighbors do. But we’re more optimistic about our kids’ futures.
Those generalizations now have numbers backing them up.
They come from a first-of-its-kind study being released Monday about the detailed “well-being” of people who live here.
A number-crunching and analysis outfit called DataHaven did the survey for the United Way of Greater New Haven and the Community Foundation for Greater New Haven.
Based on phone surveys with 1,307 randomly selected Greater New Haveners, it probed into the specifics of everyday life that can get lost in broader-brush surveys: like how often people ride the bus, say, how many cigarettes they’ve smoked, how many times a week they eat dinner with their families ... or whether they believe they can make a difference in their local government. (News flash: Most New Haveners don’t.)
Overall, despite the grumbling nature of public hearings or online comments threads, the survey shows people in the regional generally happy with their lives and their communities, including a majority of citydwellers. The region ranks in the top 20 percent of the country for general contentment.
And, of course, as any self-respecting foundation-backed survey will tell you, we also have some serious ongoing challenges and economic and racial disparities to tackle.