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Poll shows fewer Canadians believe worst of COVID-19 behind us

A new nationwide poll shows a growing number of Canadians believe the pandemic will be with us for a long time to come.

According to the Research Co. online poll, the proportion of those surveyed who saw a quick end to the pandemic has reduced drastically since mid-summer.  

Just under half of Canadians (48 percent) believe the worst of the pandemic is behind us, down 24 points since a similar Research Co. survey conducted in July.  

Conversely, more than a third of Canadians (36 percent) think that the worst of COVID-19 is ahead of us.

“Almost two thirds of Canadians aged 18-to-34 (64 percent) believe that the COVID-19 situation will not worsen,” says Mario Canseco, President of Research Co. “Significantly smaller proportions of Canadians aged 35-to-54 (50 percent) and aged 55 and over (39 percent) hold the same view.”

More than four-in-five Canadians (84 percent) consider the COVID-19 pandemic as a real threat, while 12 percent disagree and four percent are undecided.  

Fewer than one-in-five Canadians who voted for the Liberal Party (five percent), the New Democratic Party (NDP) (six percent) and the Conservative Party (16 percent) in this month’s federal election suggest that COVID-19 is not a real threat.  

The proportion of “pandemic skeptics” reaches 22 percent among Canadians who cast ballots for the Green Party and 58 percent among those who supported the People’s Party.  

More than half of Canadians (55 percent) are satisfied with the way the federal government in Ottawa has dealt with COVID-19—including majorities of those who reside in Atlantic Canada (60 percent), Quebec (60 percent), Ontario (56 percent) and British Columbia (51 percent).  

Satisfaction is slightly lower this month for the way in which municipal governments (60 percent) and provincial governments (56 percent) have performed during the pandemic.  

At least two thirds of residents of Quebec (67 percent) and B.C. (66 percent) are satisfied with the way their provincial administrations have managed COVID-19, along with half of those in Ontario (50 percent).  

The situation is extremely different in Alberta, where only 26 percent of residents are satisfied with the provincial administration on this file. This represents a 20-point decrease since July and the lowest level recorded for a government of any level since Research Co. started asking this question in March 2020.  

Seven-in-ten Canadians (71 percent) agree with allowing K-12 students to go back to in-class learning in their province. Support for this measure is highest in Saskatchewan and Manitoba (79 percent), followed by Ontario (72 percent), Quebec (71 percent), British Columbia (69 percent), Atlantic Canada (65 percent) and Alberta (61 percent).  

More than four-in-five Canadians (84 percent) are in favour of requiring all customers or visitors entering an indoor premise to wear a mask or face covering while inside.

Results are based on an online study conducted on Sept. 18th and 19th, among 1,000 adults in Canada.

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