A Third of Canadian Households Experienced COVID-19 Recently

The country’s residents are divided on whether restrictions and mandates were lifted at the right time in their community.

Vancouver, BC [August 8, 2022] – A growing number of Canadians acknowledge that their household has been negatively impacted by COVID-19 over the past few weeks, a new Research Co. poll has found.

In the online survey of a representative national sample, 37% of Canadians say themselves, or someone else in their household, became infected with COVID-19 after restrictions and mandates were lifted in their community, up 14 points since a similar Research Co. poll conducted in May 2022.

Across the country 46% of Canadians (+3) believe restrictions and mandates were abandoned too early in their community, while 44% (-5) think the decision was made at the right time.

“More than half of Atlantic Canadians (55%) appear disappointed with the absence of restrictions and mandates related to COVID-19,” says Mario Canseco, President of Research Co. “The proportions are lower in Alberta (48%), Saskatchewan and Manitoba (47%), British Columbia (45%), Quebec (also 45%) and Ontario (43%).”

Compared to May, there is little fluctuation when Canadians are asked about the possible return of specific regulations. Two thirds (66%, -2) would be satisfied if they have to wear a mask or face covering when entering an indoor premise. Slightly smaller proportions of Canadians would feel the same way if a reduction of capacity at venues (such as cinemas, theatres, concert halls and sports arenas) is implemented (63%, -1) or if proof of vaccination is required once again to go to restaurants or public events (60%, -1).

Three-in-five Canadians (60%, +1) believe it is only a matter of time before everyone catches COVID-19, and a majority (54%, +2) claim that, as long as people are vaccinated, the virus is a minor nuisance. In addition, 63% of Canadians (+3) foresee being vaccinated against COVID-19 at least once again in the next six months.

Just over two thirds of Canadians (68%) state that the worst of COVID-19 is definitely or probably “behind us”, down eight points since a similar Research Co. poll conducted in May 2022.

More than three-in-four Canadians (77%, -1) continue to brand COVID-19 as a real threat—including 82% of those aged 55 and over.

Public satisfaction with the pandemic performance of the federal government dropped from 61% in May to 55% this month. The rating is highest in Quebec (60%) and Atlantic Canada (58%), followed by Ontario (53%), Saskatchewan and Manitoba (52%), British Columbia (49%) and Alberta (48%).

The satisfaction rating also fell this month for provincial administrations (53%, -10) and municipal governments (59%, -6).

In the four most populous provinces of Canada, the level of satisfaction with COVID-19 management is highest in British Columbia (62%, =), followed by Quebec (58%, -9), Ontario (48%, -17) and Alberta (39%, -14).

Methodology: Results are based on an online study conducted from August 1 to August 3, 2022, among 1,000 adults in Canada. The data has been statistically weighted according to Canadian census figures for age, gender and region. The margin of error, which measures sample variability, is +/- 3.1 percentage points, nineteen times out of twenty.

Find our data tables here and download the press release here. 

For more information on this poll, please contact:

Mario Canseco, President, Research Co.

778.929.0490 [e] mario.canseco@researchco.ca

Photo Credit: Great11

Positive Views on TMX Pipeline Rise in BC, Drop Slightly in Alberta

A third of British Columbians (33%) believe the project should be stopped, down eight points since October 2021.

Vancouver, BC [August 5, 2022] – Favourable perceptions on the expansion of the Trans Mountain Pipeline have increased in British Columbia and remain high in Alberta, a new Research Co. poll has found.

In the online survey of representative provincial samples, 51% of British Columbians agree with the federal government’s decision to re-approve the project, up six points since a similar Research Co. poll conducted in October 2021.

Practically seven-in-ten Albertans (69%) also agree with the re-approval of the Trans Mountain Pipeline expansion, down five points since a similar Research Co. survey conducted in November 2020.

In British Columbia, residents of Southern BC (66%), Northern BC (61%) and the Fraser Valley (58%) are more likely to hold positive views on the pipeline project. The rating is lower in Metro Vancouver (50%) and Vancouver Island (41%).

In Alberta, sizeable majorities of residents of Edmonton (72%) and Calgary (66%) are in favour of the pipeline expansion, along with 70% of those who live other areas of the province.

“The proportion of British Columbians who want the provincial government to do anything necessary to ensure that the Trans Mountain Pipeline expansion does not happen dropped from 41% in October 2021 to 33% in July 2022,” says Mario Canseco, President of Research Co. “In Alberta, 25% of residents (+3) share the same point of view.”

More than half of British Columbians (51%, -4) and three-in-five Albertans (61%, +2) say they are disappointed with the way the federal government has managed the Trans Mountain Pipeline expansion.

Significant majorities of Albertans (78%, -1) and British Columbians (71%, +6) believe the Trans Mountain Pipeline will create hundreds of jobs for residents of each province.

Two-in-five British Columbians (40%, -7) think the Trans Mountain Pipeline expansion threatens the health and safety of the province’s residents. Just under three-in-ten Albertans (28%, +11) share this point of view.

Fewer than half of residents of the two provinces expect gas prices to be lower now that the Trans Mountain Pipeline expansion has been re-approved: 40% in Alberta (+6) and 37% in British Columbia (+1).

In November 2016, the federal government rejected a proposal—known as the Enbridge Northern Gateway—to build a new pipeline from Alberta to British Columbia’s north coast, to export oil on tankers to Asian markets.

Just under half of British Columbians (46%, +5) believe it is time to reconsider the Enbridge Northern Gateway proposal, while just over a quarter (27%, -7) disagree.

Support for taking a second look at the Enbridge Northern Gateway is highest in Northern BC (60%), followed by Southern BC (51%), Metro Vancouver (45%), the Fraser Valley (43%) and Vancouver Island (38%).

Methodology: Results are based on an online study conducted from July 29 to July 31, 2022, among 800 adults in British Columbia and 800 adults in Alberta. The data has been statistically weighted according to Canadian census figures for age, gender and region in each province. The margin of error – which measures sample variability – is +/- 3.5 percentage points for each province, 19 times out of 20.

Find our data tables for British Columbia here, our data tables for Alberta here and download the press release here. 

For more information on this poll, please contact:

Mario Canseco, President, Research Co.

778.929.0490

[e] mario.canseco@researchco.ca

 Photo Credit: Codex

Few British Columbians Ponder Calorie Counts When Dining Out

More than three-in-four believe it should be mandatory to display calories on any menu that lists or depicts standard food items.

Vancouver, BC [July 26, 2022] – Residents of British Columbia pay more attention to the nutritional value of foods when they are at the supermarket than when dining out or ordering in, a new Research Co. poll has found.

In the online survey of a representative provincial sample, more than a third of British Columbians (37%) say they “frequently” check labels to review nutritional content when buying groceries for themselves or others in their household.

Significantly fewer British Columbians “frequently” pay attention to menus to review nutritional content when dining out (13%) or when ordering food delivery (11%).

While almost three-in-ten British Columbians (29%) “frequently” check labels at the grocery store to review the total calories of a product, the proportion drops drastically when residents dine out (14%) or order in (11%).

A similar scenario ensues when respondents are asked about checking for two other items in the food they consume. About three-in-ten British Columbians check labels at the grocery store for sodium (32%) and fat (29%). Fewer follow the same course of action when they go to a restaurant (Sodium 14%, Fat 13%) or when they browse menus or apps for food delivery (Sodium 10%, Fat 11%).

In the Province of Ontario, it is mandatory to display calories on any menu that lists or depicts standard food items offered for sale by a regulated food service premises. More than three-in-four British Columbians (76%, -5 since a similar Research Co. poll conducted in November 2018) are in favour of adopting this regulation.

In 2012, the Province of British Columbia implemented the Informed Dining initiative, a program designed to allow residents to have nutrition information available when eating at participating food service establishments. The voluntary program was abandoned in 2020.

“British Columbians appear to be affected by the lack of standards when it comes to nutritional information in restaurants,” says Mario Canseco, President of Research Co. “Customers do not have the same information to make a decision that they currently have at the grocery store.”

The proportion of British Columbians who use an activity tracker to monitor certain fitness-related metrics—such as distance walked, amount of exercise and/or calorie consumption—increased from 41% in November 2018 to 45% this month.

Practically half of Metro Vancouverites (49%) rely on an activity tracker. The proportions are lower in Southern BC (46%), Northern BC (42%), Vancouver Island (36%) and the Fraser Valley (35%).

Methodology: Results are based on an online study conducted from July 4 to July 6, 2022, among 800 adults in British Columbia. The data has been statistically weighted according to Canadian census figures for age, gender and region in Canada. The margin of error—which measures sample variability—is plus or minus 3.5 percentage points, 19 times out of 20.

Find our data tables here and download the press release here. 

For more information on this poll, please contact:

Mario Canseco, President, Research Co.

778.929.0490 [e] mario.canseco@researchco.ca

Generation X Moves Toward Music Streaming Services in Canada

Compared to last year, fewer Canadians aged 35-to-54 are listening to music on the radio.

Vancouver, BC [July 22, 2022] – The proportion of Canadians who relied on a radio to listen to music on a weekly basis has dropped since last year, as more members of Generation X embrace streaming platforms, a new Research Co. poll has found.

In the online survey of a representative national sample, 60% of Canadians heard music on a regular radio over the past week, down six points since a similar Research Co. poll conducted in January 2021.

Just over two-in-five Canadians (41%, +1) say they listened to music on a streaming service over the past seven days, while fewer than one-in-four (23%, -7) accessed music files stored in a computer or a phone.

Over the past week, fewer Canadians heard music on an LP record, cassette or CD (13%, -2) or on satellite radio (12%, =).

“The data shows a marked generational divide when it comes to how Canadians are listening to music,” says Mario Canseco. President of Research Co. “While Canadians aged 18-to-34 were quicker to adopt streaming platforms, their counterparts aged 35-to-54 are now clearly moving in the same direction.”

Practically three-in-five Canadians aged 18-to-34 (59%) are listening to music on a streaming service, while less than half (45%, down 17 points since February 2019) are using a radio.

Almost half of Canadians aged 35-to-54 (48%, +3 since 2021) are listening to music on a streaming platform, while 62% (-8) rely on the radio.

Two thirds of Canadians aged 55 and over (67%, -3) hear music on the radio, while 27% (-1) listen on a streaming platform.

Almost one-in-four Canadians (24%, +4) paid to access a music streaming service in the last month, including 40% of those aged 18-to-34 and 26% of those aged 35-to-54.

In the last month, significantly fewer Canadians paid for and downloaded a song online (11%, =) or purchased a compact disc or LP record (7%, -3).

Canadians remain divided when asked to ponder if, in this day and age, music creators are being fairly compensated for their work. While 40% think they are (=), 40% (-1) claim that they are not.

While only 30% (-2) of Canadians aged 55 and over believe music creators are being fairly compensated right now, the proportion rises to 45% (+3) among those aged 35-to-54 and to 55% (+1) among those aged 18-to-34.

Methodology: Results are based on an online study conducted from July 11 to July 13, 2022, among 1,000 adults in Canada. The data has been statistically weighted according to Canadian census figures for age, gender and region. The margin of error – which measures sample variability – is +/- 3.1 percentage points, 19 times out of 20.

Find our data tables here and download the press release here. 

For more information on this poll, please contact:

Mario Canseco, President, Research Co.

778.929.0490 [e] mario.canseco@researchco.ca

One-in-Four Canadian WhatsApp Users Face Scams, Fake News

The vast majority of messages received on the app (84%) are personal, while fewer than one-in-five (16%) are work-related.

Vancouver, BC [July 15, 2022] – Just over two-in-five Canadians who rely on WhatsApp have never encountered one of four different setbacks while using the instant messaging application, a new Research Co. poll has found.

In the online survey of a representative national sample, 45% of Canadians say they use WhatsApp, including 68% of those aged 18-to-34 and 55% of Ontarians.

More than three-in-four Canadian WhatsApp users (76%) say they rely on the application to send text messages “every day” or “a few days a week.”

More than half of WhatsApp users in Canada (55%) share pictures through the app “every day” or “a few days a week”, a proportion that rises to 74% among those aged 18 to 34.

Fewer Canadian WhatsApp users make audio phone calls (46%), share news articles (44%) or make video phone calls (42%) “every day” or “a few days a week” through the application.

Over the course of an average week, 84% of all WhatsApp messages received by Canadians are personal in nature (from friends and family), while the remaining 16% are work-related (dealing with co-workers, tasks or clients).

Only 41% of Canadian WhatsApp users say they have not encountered any one of four problems when using the app.

Almost two-in-five Canadian WhatsApp users (38%) acknowledge that they had to block a person on the app, including 52% of Atlantic Canadians.

More than a quarter of Canadian WhatsApp users (27%) say they were added to a group without their consent, a proportion that rises to 41% in Quebec.

One-in-four Canadian WhatsApp users received “fake news” or misinformation on the app (24%) or were targeted by a scam (23%).

“About a third of Canadian WhatsApp users aged 18-to-34 (32%) are successful at pinpointing misinformation,” says Mario Canseco, President of Research Co. “The numbers are decidedly lower among their counterparts aged 35-to-54 (24%) and aged 55 and over (16%).”

WhatsApp users in British Columbia are more likely to have been targeted by a scam while using the application (26%) than those in Alberta and Quebec (24% each), Ontario (23%), Atlantic Canada (22%) and Saskatchewan and Manitoba (17%).

Methodology: Results are based on an online study conducted from June 25 to June 27, 2022, among 1,000 adults in Canada. The data has been statistically weighted according to Canadian census figures for age, gender and region. The margin of error – which measures sample variability – is +/- 3.1 percentage points, 19 times out of 20.

Find our data tables here and download the press release here. 

For more information on this poll, please contact:

Mario Canseco, President, Research Co.

778.929.0490 [e] mario.canseco@researchco.ca

British Columbians Ambiguous About Province-Wide Police Force

Seven-in-ten residents (70%) support increasing the use of closed circuit television (CCTV) in their community.

Vancouver, BC [July 12, 2022] – Residents of British Columbia are split when assessing if a province-wide police force that would replace the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) should be created, a new Research Co. poll has found.

In the online survey of a representative provincial sample, 39% of British Columbians agree with this idea, while 38% disagree and 23% are undecided.

Earlier this year, the all-party Special Committee on Reforming the Police Act in the Legislative Assembly issued a report which recommended the establishment of a BC-wide police force that would replace the RCMP.

At least two-in-five residents of Northern BC (45%), the Fraser Valley (43%), Vancouver Island (also 43%) and Metro Vancouver (40%) are in favour of instituting a BC-wide police force. Support is decidedly lower in Southern BC (26%).

The concept of “defunding the police” calls for divesting funds from police departments and reallocating them to non-policing forms of public safety and community support. Almost half of British Columbians (49%) agree with this idea, while 38% disagree and 14% are not sure.

Support for “defunding the police” is highest among BC Green Party voters in the last provincial election (66%). The level of agreement is lower among British Columbians who cast ballots for the BC New Democratic Party (NDP) (53%) or the BC Liberals (50%) in 2020.

Seven-in-ten British Columbians (70%) agree with increasing the use of closed circuit television (CCTV) cameras in their community as a means of surveillance to help deter and solve crimes.

Compared to a similar Research Co. poll conducted in November 2021, there are no changes in the perceptions of British Columbians on two issues: almost half (48%) continue to fear becoming victims of crime in their community “a great deal” or “a fair amount” and 63% would feel “very safe” or “moderately safe” walking alone in their own neighbourhood after dark.

This month, fear of crime is highest in Northern BC (52%, +3), followed by Metro Vancouver (51%, -3), Southern BC (48%, +16),  the Fraser Valley (45%, +4) and Vancouver Island (40%, -1).

Fewer than one-in-five British Columbians (18%, -2) say they have been victims of a crime involving the police (such as an assault or a car break-in) in their community over the past four years.

Just over half of British Columbians (51%, +7) believe that the level of criminal activity in their community has increased in the past four years—a proportion that jumps to 62% in Southern BC.

British Columbians continue to support the authorization of two bans in their municipality: one on military-style assault weapons (82%, -2) and another one on handguns (75%, -4).

More than half of British Columbians (51%, +3) think addiction and mental health issues are to blame “a great deal” for the current situation regarding crime in their community.

Fewer residents of the province blame other factors, such as gangs and the illegal drug trade (37%, -1), poverty and inequality (32%, +1), an inadequate court system (32%, +2), lack of values and improper education for youth (27%, =), a bad economy and unemployment (24%, +4), insufficient policing and a lack of resources to combat crime (also 22%, +2) and immigrants and minorities (8%, -1).

Methodology: Results are based on an online study conducted from July 4 to July 6, 2022, among 800 adults in British Columbia. The data has been statistically weighted according to Canadian census figures for age, gender and region in Canada. The margin of error—which measures sample variability—is plus or minus 3.5 percentage points, 19 times out of 20.

Find our data tables here and download the press release here. 

For more information on this poll, please contact:

Mario Canseco, President, Research Co.

778.929.0490 [e] mario.canseco@researchco.ca

Few Canadians Think Marital Infidelity is Morally Acceptable

Across Canada, the moral acceptability of gambling and physician assisted death dropped since 2021.

Vancouver, BC [May 17, 2022] – Only one-in-six Canadians have no moral qualms about the existence of infidelity in a marriage, a new Research Co. poll has found.

The online survey of a representative national sample asked Canadians whether they considered 21 different issues as “morally acceptable” or “morally wrong.”

Only 16% of Canadians think married men and/or women having an affair is morally acceptable, down two points since a similar Research Co. poll conducted in April 2021.

“Across Canada, more than one-in-five men (22%) think affairs involving married persons are morally acceptable,” says Mario Canseco, President of Research Co. “Only 10% of Canadian women share the same view.”

More than two thirds of Canadians think four other issues are morally acceptable: contraception (75%, -1), divorce (73%, -4), sexual relations between an unmarried man and woman (69%, -3)  and having a baby outside of marriage (also 69%, =).

More than half of Canadians believe sexual relations between two people of the same sex (59%, -3), abortion (55%, -2) and medical research using stem cells obtained from human embryos (also 55%, =) are morally acceptable. The proportions are lower for four other issues: pornography (31%, =), prostitution (30%, -3), polygamy (19%, =), cloning humans (12%, =) and paedophilia (4%, -1).

On issues related to animals, more than a third of Canadians (36%, -2) say buying and wearing clothing made of animal fur is morally acceptable, while fewer feel the same way about medical testing on animals (25%, +1) and cloning animals (19%, =).

Two-in-five Canadians (40%, -1) believe the death penalty is morally acceptable. Significantly fewer hold similar views on using illegal drugs (18%, -2) and suicide (also 18%, =).

Just over three-in-five Canadians (61%, -4) consider physician-assisted death as morally acceptable. Canadians aged 55 and over are more likely to feel this way (66%) than those aged 35-to-54 (58%) and aged 18-to-34 (57%).

Canadians of European descent are significantly more likely to say that physician-assisted death is morally acceptable (71%) than their counterparts whose origins are East Asian (49%) and South Asian (38%).

Just over half of Canadians (52%, -5) think gambling is morally acceptable.

Quebec is the only province where fewer than half of residents (48%) refer to gambling as morally acceptable. The proportions are higher in Saskatchewan and Manitoba (51%), Alberta and Ontario (each at 53%), Atlantic Canada (54%) and British Columbia (58%).

Methodology: Results are based on an online study conducted from May 7 to May 9, 2022, among 1,000 adults in Canada. The data has been statistically weighted according to Canadian census figures for age, gender and region. The margin of error, which measures sample variability, is +/- 3.1 percentage points, nineteen times out of twenty.

Find our data tables here and download the press release here. 

For more information on this poll, please contact:

Mario Canseco, President, Research Co.

778.929.0490 [e] mario.canseco@researchco.ca

More Canadians Are Having Dinner in Front of the Television Set

Practically three-in-five Canadians spend anywhere from 31 to 60 minutes preparing dinner on an average weekday.

Vancouver, BC [May 13, 2022] – Most of Canada’s evening meals occur in a setting that is not the dining room and with electronic entertainment, a new Research Co. poll has found.

In the online survey of a representative national sample, Canadians report that 45% of their dinners at home in the past month took place at the dining room with no television, down six points since a similar Research Co. poll conducted in June 2019. A majority of dinners (55%, +6) happened at a different part of the home, with the television on.

In Quebec, 50% of dinners at home in the past month occurred away from the dining room and with the television on. The proportion rises to 53% in British Columbia, 54% in Saskatchewan and Manitoba, 56% in Ontario, 58% in Atlantic Canada and 62% in Alberta.

Canadians aged 18-to-34 are having fewer evening meals away from the dining room (51%) than their counterparts aged 35-to-54 (56%) and aged 55 and over (57%).

Three-in-ten Canadians (30%, -6 since a Research Co. survey conducted in June 2020) say they spend less than 30 minutes preparing dinner for themselves and others in their household on an average weekday.

Almost three-in-five Canadians (59%, +3) say making dinner on an average weekday takes anywhere from 31 to 60 minutes, while 11% (+3) require more than one hour to prepare food.

“A third of Ontarians, Quebecers and Albertans (33% each) manage to make dinner in less than half an hour,” says Mario Canseco, President of Research Co. “Fewer residents of Saskatchewan and Manitoba (30%), British Columbia (26%) and Atlantic Canada (23%) can consistently manage this feat.”

Across the country, 65% of Canadians (unchanged) say they are “very familiar” or “moderately familiar” with Canada’s Food Guide. Awareness is lowest among Canadians aged 55 and over (56%) and rises among those aged 18-to-34 (70%) and those aged 35-to-54 (71%).

Fewer than three-in-five residents of British Columbia (58%) and Saskatchewan and Manitoba (59%) are familiar with Canada’s Food Guide. The proportion is higher in Quebec (64%), Alberta (65%), Ontario (68%) and Atlantic Canada (71%).

Just over a third of Canadians (35%, -6) rely on the recommendations of Canada’s Food Guide “all the time” or “most of the time” when choosing what they eat in an average week.

Women are more likely to review the recommendations of Canada’s Food Guide when deciding what to prepare (40%) than men (32%).

Methodology: Results are based on an online study conducted from May 7 to May 9, 2022, among 1,000 adults in Canada. The data has been statistically weighted according to Canadian census figures for age, gender and region. The margin of error, which measures sample variability, is +/- 3.1 percentage points, nineteen times out of twenty.

Find our data tables here and download the press release here. 

For more information on this poll, please contact:

Mario Canseco, President, Research Co.

778.929.0490 [e] mario.canseco@researchco.ca

Credit and Debit Cards Relied Upon for Most Payments in Canada

Most Canadians say that lack of cash compelled them to make a small purchase with their credit or debit card in the last month.

Vancouver, BC [May 6, 2022] – Canadians are currently using cash for transactions at a higher rate than during the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic, but most payments continue to be made through alternative methods, a new Research Co. poll has found.

In the online survey of a representative national sample, Canadians relied on a credit card or a smartphone to finalize 46% of their purchases over the past month, down four points since a similar Research Co. poll conducted in May 2020.

One third of purchases from Canadians (33%, -2) were completed with a debit card or e-transfer, while 3% (-9) entailed the use of a cheque. Cash was used for the remaining 18% of transactions (+15).

“Credit cards are the main form of payment for residents of British Columbia (58%) and Quebec (50%),” says Mario Canseco, President of Research Co. “The debit card is the preferred option for residents of Ontario (47%) and Alberta (43%).”

More than three-in-five Canadians (63%) say that, over the course of the past month, there was a time when they did not have any paper money with them and had to make a small purchase (less than $10) with their credit or debit card.

While 50% of Canadians aged 55 and over were caught without paper money in the past month, the proportion rises to 64% among those aged 35-to-54 and to 77% among those aged 18-to-34.

Half of Canadians (50%, -8) expect people to rely on biometrics (such as iris scans, fingerprints or palm recognition) to complete purchases at some point within the next 10 years.

Albertans are more likely to predict the introduction of biometric payments in the next 10 years (60%). Belief in this vision becoming reality is lower in Ontario (52%), Quebec (50%), British Columbia (also 50%), Saskatchewan and Manitoba (43%) and Atlantic Canada (37%).

Almost half of Canadians (49%, +14) say they would not like to see people utilizing biometrics to buy things in their lifetimes. Just under two-in-five (39%, -11) would welcome this development, and 12% (-3) are undecided.

Men (43%), Canadians aged 18-to-34 (49%), Albertans (also 49%) and Quebecers (44%) are more likely to wish for the opportunity to make payments through biometrics in the future.

Methodology: Results are based on an online study conducted from April 25 to April 27, 2022, among 1,000 adults in Canada. The data has been statistically weighted according to Canadian census figures for age, gender and region. The margin of error, which measures sample variability, is +/- 3.1 percentage points, nineteen times out of twenty.

Find our data tables here and download the press release here. 

For more information on this poll, please contact:

Mario Canseco, President, Research Co.

778.929.0490 [e] mario.canseco@researchco.ca

Fewer British Columbians Are Noticing Distracted Drivers on Roads

Almost two thirds of the province’s residents support seizing the electronic devices of repeat offenders.

Vancouver, BC [April 19, 2022] – While the proportion of British Columbians who are detecting distracted drivers has dropped since 2020, most of the province’s residents think it is time for tougher penalties to deal with this issue, a new Research Co. poll has found.

In the online survey of a representative provincial sample, 46% of British Columbians say they witnessed a driver talking on a hand-held cell phone or texting while driving over the past four weeks, down nine points since a similar Research Co. poll conducted in December 2020.

Men (50%) and British Columbians aged 18-to-34 (52%) are more likely to say that they crossed paths with a distracted driver than women (43%) and British Columbians aged 35-to-54 (47%) and aged 55 and over (42%).

Drivers caught emailing, texting, or using an electronic device while driving in British Columbia face a fine of $368 and four penalty points (equivalent to $252) in their insurance penalty point premium. This means a total of $620 for a first-time infraction.

A majority of British Columbians (56%, +4) say the current fine for distracted driving in the province is “about right”, while 24% (-6) deem it “too low” and 15% (+1) consider it “too high.”

While one third of residents of Vancouver Island (33%) believe the current penalty for distracted driving is “too low”, the proportion is lower in Northern BC (29%), the Fraser Valley (22%), Southern BC (21%) and Metro Vancouver (also 21%).

More than half of British Columbians are in favour of three different penalties for drivers caught emailing, texting, or using an electronic device in the province, although the level of support for each one is lower in 2022 than in 2020.

Across the province, 52% of British Columbians (-2) support suspending drivers who break the law for a year, while 41% (+4) are opposed to this course of action.

“The notion of suspending distracted drivers for 12 months is contentious on a regional basis,” says Mario Canseco, President of Research Co. “While 54% of residents of Metro Vancouver, Southern BC and Vancouver Island like the idea, the proportion drops to 44% in Northern BC and to 42% in the Fraser Valley.”

More than half of the province’s residents (55%, -4) are in favour of doubling the current first-time fine to $1,240, while almost two thirds (64%, -6) support seizing the electronic devices of repeat offenders.

Methodology: Results are based on an online study conducted from April 1 to April 5, 2022, among 650 adults in British Columbia who are employed full time or part time. The data has been statistically weighted according to Canadian census figures for age, gender and region in British Columbia. The margin of error, which measures sample variability, is +/- 3.9 percentage points, nineteen times out of twenty.

Find our data tables here and download the press release here. 

For more information on this poll, please contact:

Mario Canseco, President, Research Co.

778.929.0490 [e] mario.canseco@researchco.ca

Most Canadians Question Their Public Speaking Capabilities

A majority (51%) feel anxious when they have to make a phone call to a person they do not know.

Vancouver, BC [April 15, 2022] – Many Canadians are not particularly confident about their ability to address an audience publicly, a new Research Co. poll has found.

In the online survey of a representative national sample, 44% of Canadians say they would have no problem giving a speech in front of other people. More than half (52%) disagree with this assessment.

Across the country, 51% of Canadians say they feel anxious when they have to make a phone call to a person they do not know—a proportion that rises to 57% among women and 61% among Canadians aged 18-to-34.

Canadians are divided when pondering text messages and emails, with 46% finding this form of communication impersonal and 47% disagreeing with this point of view.

“A majority of Canadians aged 55 and over (55%) brand electronic communications as impersonal,” says Mario Canseco, President of Research Co. “The proportion is lower among their counterparts aged 35-to-54 (46%) and aged 18-to-34 (36%).”

The survey asked Canadians about their preferred mode of communication for various tasks. More than four-in-five Canadians (82%) say they would end a relationship with someone in person. Only 7% of Canadians would break up by sending a text message, including 11% of those aged 18-to-34.

Almost three-in-four Canadians (73%) say they would prefer to quit a job in person, but 15% would do so by sending an email, including 18% of women and 24% of Canadians aged 18-to-34.

Canadians are evenly divided on the best way to order food delivery to their home, with identical proportions choosing to make a phone call (39%) or use an app (also 39%).

While a majority of Canadians aged 18-to-34 (53%) would rely on an app to manage food delivery, the proportion drops slightly to 47% among those aged 35-to-54 and falls to 20% among those aged 55 and over.

Canadians who live in Alberta (50%) and Ontario (49%) are more likely to prefer to use an app to order food delivery than their counterparts in British Columbia (44%), Saskatchewan and Manitoba (43%), Quebec (26%) and Atlantic Canada (18%).

More than a third of Canadians (37%) say they would make a phone call if they had to ask a question to their bank, while a smaller proportion (32%) would visit in person. Significantly fewer Canadians prefer an email (15%), an app (11%) or a text message (5%) for this particular task.

If Canadians had to ask a question to their municipality or City Hall, almost two-in-five (39%) would send an email, while one third (33%) would place a phone call and one-in-five (20%) would schedule a meeting in person.

Methodology: Results are based on an online study conducted from April 1 to April 3, 2022, among 1,000 adults in Canada. The data has been statistically weighted according to Canadian census figures for age, gender and region in Canada. The margin of error—which measures sample variability—is plus or minus 3.1 percentage points, 19 times out of 20.

Find our data tables here and download the press release here. 

For more information on this poll, please contact:

Mario Canseco, President, Research Co.

778.929.0490 [e] mario.canseco@researchco.ca

British Columbians Would Take “Home Office” To New Employer

More than half of those who worked from home during the pandemic are willing to switch jobs to avoid commuting.  

Vancouver, BC [January 25, 2002] – Most British Columbians who have had to work from home during the COVID-19 pandemic are willing to explore opportunities that provide the flexibility to be away from an office setting, a new Research Co. poll has found.  

In the online survey of a representative sample, 58% of employed British Columbians who have worked from home during the pandemic say they are “very likely” or “moderately likely” to seek a different job if their current company does not allow them to labour from home as often as they want, up two points since a similar Research Co. poll conducted in September 2021.  

“British Columbians aged 18-to-34 have developed a deeper attachment to the home office, with 64% saying they would switch jobs if their new employer allows them to avoid commuting,” says Mario Canseco, President of Research Co. “The proportion is lower among those aged 35-to-54 (59%) and those aged 55 and over (45%).”  

Almost two thirds of British Columbia’s “home workers” (64%, =) would consider switching to a different job that can be performed from home for a company located in their own metropolitan area. A majority (57%, +2) would consider this course of action for a business located in the province, while 45% (+1) would be willing to enter an arrangement with a company headquartered in another province.  

More than half of employed British Columbians (54%) acknowledge working from home at some point during the COVID-19 pandemic—a proportion that rises to 65% among those aged 18-to-34.  

This month, only 34% of employed British Columbians who have worked from home during the pandemic say they expect to be able to remain in their home office at least three times a week when the pandemic ends, down 13 points since September 2021. Only 11% (-4) believe they will not be able to work from home at all when COVID-19 is over.  

Fewer than two-in-five “home workers” in British Columbia have been advised of a plan for employees to return to the usual office (37%, -8) or of a plan for how employees will be able to work from home after the pandemic is over (also 37%, -3).  

Employed British Columbians continue to expect certain features of their jobs to remain in place after COVID-19 is behind us. More than two-in-five foresee increases in virtual communications between offices (46%, +3), virtual staff meetings (45%, +2) and virtual business development (also 45%, +4).  

Conversely, sizeable proportions of employed British Columbians expect reductions for in-person staff meetings (43%, +1), business travel (39%, +2) and in-person business development meetings (38%, =) once the pandemic is over.

Methodology:
Results are based on an online study conducted on January 6 and January 7, 2022, among 700 adults who work in British Columbia. The data has been statistically weighted according to Canadian census figures for age, gender and region in British Columbia. The margin of error—which measures sample variability—is +/- 3.7 percentage points, nineteen times out of twenty.
 

Find our data tables here and download the press release here. 

For more information on this poll, please contact:

Mario Canseco, President, Research Co.

778.929.0490

Scam and Foreign Language Calls Increase in British Columbia

Half of mobile phone users have been targeted by calls and messages where an individual speaks Cantonese or Mandarin.  
 
Vancouver, BC [January 21, 2022] – The incidence of phone calls and messages from people pretending to represent a government agency has risen dramatically in British Columbia over the past two years, a new Research Co. poll has found.  
 
In the online survey of a representative sample of British Columbians, 50% of mobile phone users say they have been targeted by these phone calls and messages in the past two months, up 15 points since a similar Research Co. poll conducted in September 2019.  
 
Phone calls and/or phone messages from an individual purporting to represent a government agency (such as the Canada Revenue Agency) are more prevalent among men (52%) and British Columbians aged 35-to-54 (also 52%).  
 
“Almost three-in-five mobile phone users in Vancouver Island (58%) report getting these scam calls recently,” says Mario Canseco, President of Research Co. “More than half of those who reside in Northern BC (54%) and Metro Vancouver (51%) also had to deal with these unwanted communications.”  
 
Just over half of mobile phone users in British Columbia (51%) say they have received phone calls and/or phone messages where an individual speaks Cantonese or Mandarin in the past two months, up 20 points since September 2019.  
 
More than three-in-five mobile phone users in Metro Vancouver (61%) have been exposed to calls or messages in Cantonese or Mandarin.  
 
British Columbians of South Asian descent are more likely to report being targeted by these communications in a foreign language (70%) than their counterparts of East Asian (61%) and European (47%) origins.  
 
Only 18% of mobile phone users in British Columbia received a text message asking if they support a specific party or policy from an individual they do not know in the past two months, down 19 points since 2019.  
 
Across the province, only 28% of mobile phone users (+1) say they did not receive any of these types of messages in the past two months.
 
Methodology:
Results are based on an online study conducted from December 21 to December 23, 2021, among 800 adults in British Columbia. The data has been statistically weighted according to Canadian census figures for age, gender and region. The margin of error—which measures sample variability—is +/- 3.5 percentage points, nineteen times out of twenty.
 

Find our data tables here and download the press release here. 

For more information on this poll, please contact:

Mario Canseco, President, Research Co.

778.929.0490

British Columbians Still Back Proposed Ban on Single-Use Plastics

Three-in-four of the province’s residents say they rely on their own re-usable bags to transport groceries out of a store.  
 
Vancouver, BC [December 31, 2021] – Public support remains high in British Columbia for the federal government’s plan to reduce plastic use across Canada, a new Research Co. poll has found.  
 
In the online survey of a representative provincial sample, 82% of British Columbians are in favour of banning single-use plastics, unchanged since a similar Research Co. poll conducted in January 2021.
 
The federal government’s proposed regulation focuses on items such as grocery checkout bags, straws, stir sticks, six-pack rings, plastic cutlery and food takeout containers made from hard-to-recycle plastics. Several municipalities in British Columbia have already implemented their own guidelines for specific items, such as grocery checkout bags.  
 
Just over three-in-four British Columbians (76%, -1) acknowledge relying on their own reusable bag to transport groceries out of a store after purchasing them. Significantly smaller proportions of the province’s residents use bags provided by the store, either made out of paper (11%) or plastic (9%).  
 
“There is a generational gap in the adoption of reusable bags in British Columbia,” says Mario Canseco, President of Research Co. “Practically nine-in-ten residents aged 55 and over (88%) are already using their own bags at grocery stores, compared to 73% among those aged 35-to-54 and 62% among those aged 18-to-34.”  
 
Just over half of British Columbians (51%, -3) say they go out of their way to recycle “all of the time”, such as holding on to bottles and cans until they can be placed into a proper recycling bin. Once again, this behaviour is more common among the province’s residents aged 55 and over (66%) than their counterparts aged 35-to-54 (50%) and aged 18-to-34 (32%).  
 
More than three-in-five residents of Vancouver Island (65%) and Northern BC (63%) claim to go out of their way to recycle “all of the time.” The proportion is lower in Southern BC (58%), the Fraser Valley (57%) and Metro Vancouver (44%).  
 
One-in-five British Columbians (20%, -6) acknowledge limiting hot water usage in their home “all the time” by taking shorter showers or running washing machines or dishwashers with full loads only.  
 
Fewer British Columbians say they unplug electrical devices in their home—such as TVs, computers and cell phone chargers—when they are not in use (12%, -1), buy biodegradable products (5%, -2) or eat organic or home-grown foods (also 5%, -2) “all of the time.”
 
Methodology:
Results are based on an online study conducted from December 21 to December 23, 2021, among 800 adults in British Columbia. The data has been statistically weighted according to Canadian census figures for age, gender and region. The margin of error—which measures sample variability—is +/- 3.5 percentage points, nineteen times out of twenty.
 

Find our data tables here and download the press release here. 

For more information on this poll, please contact:

Mario Canseco, President, Research Co.

778.929.0490

Metro Vancouver Drivers Reject Paying to Park on the Street

Seven-in-ten drivers say it is harder to find a parking spot in their municipality when they need one.  
 
Vancouver, BC [December 14, 2021] – A sizeable majority of drivers in Metro Vancouver reject the notion of having to pay to park their cars on residential streets overnight, a new Research Co. poll has found.  
 
In the online survey of a representative sample, almost two thirds of drivers in Metro Vancouver (64%) think it is a “bad idea” to charge a fee to vehicle owners who park their cars on residential streets overnight.  
 
“More than three-in-five drivers in Surrey (62%) and Vancouver (61%) are not in favour of an overnight residential parking fee,” says Mario Canseco, President of Research Co. “In the rest of the Metro Vancouver region, 67% of drivers are opposed.”  
 
A majority of drivers in Metro Vancouver (51%) say they have a garage and park their vehicle there, while 22% rely on a shared parkade. Just over one-in-ten (13%) say they have a garage, but do not park their vehicle inside it—including 16% of men and 15% of those who reside in Surrey.  
 
Seven-in-ten drivers in Metro Vancouver (70%) say it is harder now to find a parking spot in their municipality when they need one, down 11 points since a similar Research Co. poll conducted in November 2018.  
 
Over the past two years, 27% of drivers in Metro Vancouver acknowledge having received a parking ticket. Similar proportions of citations have been issued by municipalities (17%, -1) and by parking management companies (15%, -5).  
 
Drivers in Vancouver are significantly more likely to report getting a parking ticket of any kind (40%, +12) than their counterparts in Surrey (22%, -11) and in other Metro Vancouver municipalities (20%, -13).  
 
When asked how they dealt with the last parking ticket they were issued by a municipality, two thirds of offending drivers (68%, -8) say they paid quickly to get a discount, while 26% (+15) covered the full amount days later and 6% (-7) never paid it.  
 
The situation is similar for tickets issued by a parking management company, with a majority of offending drivers (56%, +5) paying quickly, three-in-ten (30%,+15) covering the full amount later and 15% (-19) admitting to never paying the fine.  
 
Drivers aged 55 and over who receive a parking ticket are significantly more likely to pay the fine early, whether the citation was issued by a municipality (86%) or by a parking management company (65%).
 
Methodology:
Results are based on an online study conducted from November 27 to November 29, 2021, among 521 adults in Metro Vancouver who drive to school or work on weekdays. The data has been statistically weighted according to Canadian census figures for age, gender and region in Metro Vancouver. The margin of error— which measures sample variability—is +/- 4.3 percentage points, nineteen times out of twenty.
 

Find our data tables here and download the press release here. 

For more information on this poll, please contact:

Mario Canseco, President, Research Co.

778.929.0490

Shopping Habits of British Columbians Altered by Pandemic

A majority of the province’s residents aged 18-to-34 acknowledge that they prefer to buy things online instead of in person.  

Vancouver, BC [December 3, 2021] – British Columbians are not visiting restaurants and coffee shops as much as they did before the COVID-19 pandemic, and more than a third are relying on online platforms more often to acquire items and gifts, a new Research Co. poll has found.  

In the online survey of a representative provincial sample, at least three-in-five British Columbians say they are visiting a sit-down restaurant less often than before the pandemic for breakfast (60%), lunch (62%) or dinner (65%).  

Almost two thirds of British Columbians (64%) also acknowledge that they are having a drink at a pub or bar less often than they did two years ago.  

Significant proportions of British Columbians also report visiting coffee shops less often to purchase beverages or snacks to go (40%) or to be enjoyed inside the venue (59%).  

Seven-in-ten British Columbians of East Asian descent (70%) say they are dining out less often than they did before the pandemic. Two thirds of the province’s residents of European (66%) and First Nations origins (also 66%) are also not visiting restaurants for dinner as often as they used to.  

Across the province, 27% of British Columbians say they are buying groceries in person less often now than two years ago. About two-in-five of the province’s residents also say they are going to stores less often than before the pandemic to purchase items for the home or family (38%) or to buy gifts (42%).  

Conversely, 22% of British Columbians say they are purchasing groceries online for home delivery more often than two years ago. More than a third are also relying on online platforms more often now to acquire gifts (36%) or items for the home or family (38%).  

When asked if they prefer buying things online or in person, a majority of British Columbians (54%) express a predilection for in store purchases, while two-in-five (41%) say they would rather use the internet.  

“There are some clear generational differences when British Columbians are asked about how they like to buy things,” says Mario Canseco, President of Research Co. “Most of the province’s residents aged 18-to-34 (56%) prefer online platforms, those aged 55 and over are fonder of buying things in person (71%) and those aged 35-to-54 are evenly split.”  

Methodology:
Results are based on an online study conducted from November 15 to November 17, 2021, among 800 adults in British Columbia. The data has been statistically weighted according to Canadian census figures for age, gender and region in Canada. The margin of error—which measures sample variability—is plus or minus 3.5 percentage points, 19 times out of 20.
 

Find our data tables here and download the press release here. 

For more information on this poll, please contact:

Mario Canseco, President, Research Co.

778.929.0490

Confidence in Local Drivers Improving Across Canada

The proportion of Canadians who say drivers are “worse” than five years ago has fallen from 50% in 2018 to 39% this year.  
 
Vancouver, BC [November 30, 2021] – The proportion of Canadians who believe drivers in their city or town are getting worse has reached the lowest level recorded over the past four years, a new Research Co. poll has found.  
 
In the online survey of a representative national sample, 30% of Canadians say drivers in their city or town are worse now than five years ago, while half (50%) report no change and 10% believe they are better.  
 
“When we first asked this question in 2018, half of Canadians (50%) felt that drivers were worse than in the past,” says Mario Canseco, President of Research Co. “The proportion has fallen each year, to 47% in 2019, then to 39% in 2020 and now to 30% in 2021.”  
 
At least a third of Canadians who reside in Saskatchewan and Manitoba (35%, -7), British Columbia (34%, -6) and Alberta (33%, -9) believe drivers in their city or town are worse now than five years ago. The proportion is lower among Canadians who live in Ontario (30%, -13), Atlantic Canada (25%, -14) and Quebec (24%, -8).  
 
Canadians aged 55 and over are more critical of drivers in their city or town, with 36% believing that the situation is worse now than five years ago, compared to 32% among those aged 35-to-54 and 21% among those aged 18-to-34.  
 
The survey also tracks the incidence of six specific occurrences on the country’s roads. A majority of Canadians (55%, +1) report seeing a driver not signalling before a turn over the past month, a proportion that climbs to 62% in Manitoba and Saskatchewan.  
 
Almost two-in-five Canadians (38%, +2) witnessed a driver not stopping at an intersection and a third (32%, -1) saw a driver turning right or left from an incorrect lane, including 37% of British Columbians.
 
Fewer than three-in-ten Canadians (28%, +2) experienced a close call, or having to slam the brakes or steer violently to avoid a collision. In addition, 41% of Canadians (+3) say they saw a car taking up two or more stops at a parking lot, including a majority of Albertans (51%).  
 
Just over half of Canadians (51%, -5) say that there are specific groups or people in their city or town who are worse drivers than others.  
 
The top four responses among Canadians who blamed a specific group for bad driving behaviours are “young” (32%, -11), “elderly” (21%, -4), “Asian (16%, -1) and “immigrant” (6%, +1).
 
Methodology:
Results are based on an online study conducted from November 20 to November 22, 2021, among a representative sample of 1,000 adults in Canada. The data has been statistically weighted according to Canadian census figures for age, gender and region. The margin of error—which measures sample variability—is +/- 3.1 percentage points, 19 times out of 20..
 

Find our data tables here and download the press release here. 

For more information on this poll, please contact:

Mario Canseco, President, Research Co.

778.929.0490

Perceptions of Public Safety Wobble in British Columbia

Compared to late 2020, fewer residents of the province say they would feel safe walking alone in their neighbourhood after dark.  
 
Vancouver, BC [November 9, 2021] – The views of British Columbians on specific indicators related to criminal activity have become more dire during 2021, a new Research Co. poll has found.  
 
In the online survey of a representative provincial sample, almost half of British Columbians (48%) say they fear becoming victims of crime in their community “a great deal” or “a fair amount”, up six points since a similar Research Co. poll conducted in December 2020.  
 
Fear of crime is highest in Metro Vancouver (54%), followed by Northern BC (49%), the Fraser Valley (41%), Vancouver Island (also 41%) and Southern BC (32%).  
 
Across the province, 63% of British Columbians say they would feel “very safe” or “moderately safe” walking alone in their own neighbourhood after dark, down five points since 2020.  
 
“Practically three-in-four men in British Columbia (74%) say they would feel safe strolling through their neighbourhood at night,” says Mario Canseco, President of Research Co. “Only 53% of women share the same point of view.”  
 
More than two-in-five British Columbians (44%, up two points since November 2020) say the level of criminal activity in their community has increased in the past four years—a proportion that rises to 53% in Southern BC and 54% in Vancouver Island.  
 
Over the past four years, one-in-five British Columbians (20%, -1) have been victims of a crime involving the police (such as an assault or a car break-in) in their community.  
 
Almost half of British Columbians (48%, +3) believe addiction and mental health issues are to blame “a great deal” for the current situation regarding crime in their community, while almost two-in-five (38%, =) point the finger at gangs and the illegal drug trade.  
 
Fewer British Columbians place “most of the blame” for criminal activity on poverty and inequality (31%, +5), an inadequate court system (30%, +4), lack of values and improper education for youth (27%, +3), a bad economy and unemployment (20%, +1), insufficient policing and a lack of resources to combat crime (also 20%, +4) and immigrants and minorities (9%, =).  
 
Sizeable proportions of British Columbians remain supportive of enacting a ban on military-style assault weapons (84%, +2) and a ban on handguns (79%, -1) within the limits of their municipality.
 
Methodology:
Results are based on an online study conducted from November 1 to November 3, 2021, among 800 adults in British Columbia. The data has been statistically weighted according to Canadian census figures for age, gender and region in British Columbia. The margin of error—which measures sample variability—is plus or minus 3.5 percentage points, 19 times out of 20.
 

Find our data tables here and download the press release here. 

For more information on this poll, please contact:

Mario Canseco, President, Research Co.

778.929.0490

British Columbians Tired of Government Inaction on Mobile Costs

Seven-in-ten of the province’s cell phone users say their current plan is “expensive”, unchanged since 2019.  
 
Vancouver, BC [September 20, 2021] – More than two years after the federal Liberal Party promised to reduce the cost of mobile phones and internet bills for Canadians, few British Columbians expect this pledge to ultimately be fulfilled, a new Research Co. poll has found.  
 
In the online survey of a representative provincial sample, only 25% of British Columbians think the federal government will “definitely” or “probably” achieve this promise, down six points from a similar Research Co. survey conducted in December 2019.  
 
British Columbians are also not particularly hopeful about their provincial administration, which appointed MLA Bob D’Eith to work with the federal government to explore more affordable and transparent mobile phone options.  
 
Across the province, only 32% of British Columbians expect the provincial government’s push to be successful, down three points since December 2019.  
 
“British Columbians aged 55 and over are more likely to be skeptical about a future where mobile service is more affordable,” says Mario Canseco, President of Research Co. “Only 22% of the province’s oldest adults think the provincial government will be effective in its efforts and just 16% think the federal government will fulfil the promise made in the previous electoral campaign.”  
 
Across the province, seven-in-ten mobile phone users (70%) describe the cost of their mobile phone plan as “very expensive” or “moderately expensive”, unchanged since December 2019.  
 
Women (70%) and British Columbians aged 35-to-54 (74%) are more likely to believe that they pay too much for their cell phone every month.  
 
A monthly plan for a mobile phone in Canada with two gigabytes of data costs about $75.  
 
About a third of British Columbians think a similar plan would be less expensive if they lived in Australia (33%) or Italy (34%), while more than half (57%) think they would pay less to access the same services in the United States.
 
Methodology:
Results are based on an online study conducted on September 5 and September 6, 2021, among 700 adults who work in British Columbia. The data has been statistically weighted according to Canadian census figures for age, gender and region in British Columbia. The margin of error—which measures sample variability—is +/- 3.7 percentage points, nineteen times out of twenty.
 

Find our data tables here and download the press release here. 

For more information on this poll, please contact:

Mario Canseco, President, Research Co.

778.929.0490

Many British Columbians in the Dark About Return to Office

Almost half of those who worked from home during the COVID-19 pandemic expect to be able to do so at least three times a week.  
 
Vancouver, BC [September 13, 2021] – Sizeable proportions of British Columbians who worked from home during the COVID-19 pandemic have not been adequately informed about an eventual return to the workplace, a new Research Co. poll has found.  
 
In the online survey of a representative sample, only 45% of employed British Columbians who have worked from home during the pandemic say their company has outlined a plan for employees to return to the office after the pandemic is over.  
 
In addition, only 40% of British Columbians who worked from home during the pandemic say their company has outlined a plan for how they will be able to work from home in the future.  
 
Across the province, 55% of employed British Columbians say they laboured from home instead of at their usual workplace during the COVID-19 pandemic, including 59% of women, 59% of those aged 18-to-34 and 73% of those whose duties are primarily related to office work.  
 
Just under half of employed British Columbians who have worked from home during the pandemic (47%) say they expect to be able to continue doing so at least three times a week, up nine points since a similar Research Co. survey conducted in March.  
 
“The past six months have not provided clarity for many employed British Columbians on what their work arrangements will look like,” says Mario Canseco, President of Research Co. “The expectations of a future where the home office plays a prominent role on weekdays have increased markedly, particularly in the Fraser Valley and Vancouver Island.”  
 
More than half of British Columbians who worked from home (56%) say they are “very likely” or “moderately likely” to seek a different job if their current company does not allow them to work from home as often as they want, up seven points since March.  
 
Almost two thirds of employed British Columbians who have worked from home (64%) say they would consider switching to a different job that can be performed from home for a company located in their own metropolitan area. More than half (55%) would consider a similar arrangement reporting to a company headquartered in their own province, while more than two-in-five (44%) would entertain an offer from a company in another province.  
 
There is some change when it comes to some of the current features of office life. Compared to March, fewer employed British Columbians expect an increase in virtual communications between offices (43%, -3), virtual staff meetings (43%, -7) and virtual business development (41%, -6).  
 
The proportions are also lower on the expectations of fewer in-person staff meetings (42%, -5), less business travel (37%, -7) and a reduction of in-person business development meetings (38%, -5) once the pandemic ends.
 
Methodology:
Results are based on an online study conducted on September 5 and September 6, 2021, among 700 adults who work in British Columbia. The data has been statistically weighted according to Canadian census figures for age, gender and region in British Columbia. The margin of error—which measures sample variability—is +/- 3.7 percentage points, nineteen times out of twenty.
 

Find our data tables here and download the press release here. 

For more information on this poll, please contact:

Mario Canseco, President, Research Co.

778.929.0490