Many Canadians will say “good riddance” to 2022 as it draws to a close, according to a new poll, with more people comparing it unfavorably to 2021 than saying it was a better year.
In early December, polling firm Leger asked Canadians how they felt about the past year and how their outlook for 2023 is shaping up.
It revealed that 31% of respondents felt this year was worse for them than last year and only 21% said it was better. Another 46% said it was about the same, and 3% said they didn’t know or preferred not to answer.
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A total of 1,526 Canadians took part in the online survey from December 9 to 11. It cannot be assigned a margin of error, as online polls are not considered truly random samples.
Christian Bourque, Leger’s executive vice president, noted that 2021 had been a pandemic year where “there was basically not much you could do.”
“Everyone would have thought 2022 would have been better, right?” he said in an interview.
As the last year saw the lifting of widespread COVID-19 restrictions and millions of people returning to more normal routines and hours, Bourque said concerns about inflation and the cost of living were the main reasons that led people to have a darker outlook.
“I think there’s probably a level of angst in the Canadian public that we haven’t seen in a while,” he said.
He added that the people most likely to have a negative view of 2022 were people aged 55 and older, who may be on fixed incomes and wondering how they’ll make ends meet, and those who live in Atlantic Canada. and in British Columbia, places affected by major weather disasters. .
High inflation and Russia’s invasion of Ukraine earlier this year remain a top concern for Canadians as they ponder what might happen in 2023, the poll found.
When asked which events concerned them most, 86% of respondents cited a combination of inflation, higher interest rates and higher prices, while 81% said they feared an economic recession.
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The results show that 72% of respondents said they were concerned about the spread of the war in Ukraine and 68% were worried about “catastrophic” weather phenomena due to climate change.
When it comes to COVID-19, the poll suggests far fewer Canadians are worried about the virus, with just over half, or 52%, saying they’re worried about a resurgence.
More people, 57%, were concerned about the spread of another different virus.
While the “Freedom Convoy” protests staged in Ottawa and at several US border crossings last winter proved to be a defining moment for the country in 2022, few Canadians seem to fear that 2023 will bring more civil disobedience.
According to the survey, only 35% of respondents said they were worried about such activities near their homes.
Unsurprisingly, the poll suggests that those most worried about prices and the economy are supporters of the Conservative Party of Canada, whose leader, Pierre Poilievre, has made both his main focus.
It also shows that more federal Liberal and New Democrat supporters are nervous about the war in Ukraine and weather disasters related to climate change than Conservative voters.
When it comes to how Canadians view 2023, the poll suggests the country is feeling more optimistic. It says 34% of respondents said they thought 2022 would be better, compared to 22% who said they thought it would be worse.
Another 40% said they thought the new year would be about the same, and 4% either didn’t provide an answer or didn’t know.
© 2022 The Canadian Press