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British Columbians have little sympathy for the unvaccinated who get COVID: survey

Image Credit: ADOBE STOCK
August 18, 2021 - 6:30 AM

Didn’t bother to get vaccinated and now you have COVID? Don’t look for a shoulder to cry on from the vast majority of your fellow British Columbians.

A new Angus Reid survey found that 81 per cent of British Columbians and 75 per cent of Canadians agreed with the statement: “I don’t have a lot of sympathy for people who chose not to be vaccinated and then got COVID-19.”

In B.C., 51 per cent strongly agreed with that statement and 30 per cent agreed.

The survey was conducted from Aug. 8 to 10 and included 1,615 Canadians (205 from B.C.) who are members of the Angus Reid Forum.

Some of the survey focused on the differences between the major political parties on COVID-related issues heading into the Sept. 20 federal election.

For example, 93 per cent of Liberals support either regulations or incentives or both to spur higher vaccination levels compared to 67 per cent of Conservatives.

There are also regional differences.

In Saskatchewan, 37 per cent of residents said their provincial government, which sets health care regulations, should do nothing to encourage vaccination. That falls to 30 per cent in Manitoba. B.C. equals the national average at 18 per cent with Quebec at 13 per cent.

Twenty-seven per cent of young men, aged 18 to 34 oppose any kind of regulations, the highest of any age group, but they are also least likely to vote in the upcoming election, the Angus Reid report says.

In contrast, only 20 per cent of women in that age group opposed regulations. Those 55 and over were least likely to oppose regulations.

In a separate poll, Insights West found that 79 per cent of B.C. residents support proof of double vaccinations for people to participate in various activates.

READ MORE: Bars and nightclubs hardest hit by new COVID restrictions in the Central Okanagan

The majority, 57 per cent, strongly support the idea and 22 per cent somewhat support. Only 19 per cent are opposed.

Not surprisingly, 88 per cent of those who are vaccinated support the idea of vaccinations for certain activities versus only 34 per cent of the unvaccinated.

Those most opposed to requiring vaccinations in order to participate in certain activities tend to be 34- to 54-year-old men living outside of Metro Vancouver who are more likely to vote Liberal or Green, the Insights West report says.

The poll was conducted earlier this month and included 1,155 members of Insights West’s Feedback Community.

The level of support for mandatory double vaccinations depended on the activity. Flying within Canada and attending concerts topped the poll at 81 per cent in favour.

There were 79 per cent of respondents in favour for vaccinating those who attended sporting events, 77 per cent for attending university, 74 per cent for attending a gym and 68 per cent for eating in a restaurant.

Eighty-seven per cent were in favour of the idea that hospital and medical workers get fully vaccinated, with 84 per cent in favour of vaccinations for chiropractors, physiologists and dentists, 83 per cent for teachers and 81 per cent for employees at live sporting events.

READ MORE: All staff in B.C. long term care homes must be fully vaccinated by Oct. 12

See more about the Angus Reid survey here and the Insights West survey here.

To contact a reporter for this story, email Rob Munro or call 250-808-0143 or email the editor. You can also submit photos, videos or news tips to the newsroom and be entered to win a monthly prize draw.

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