Most Canadians feel 2022 was worse than 2021, poll suggests
The poll found that 34 percent of respondents said they feel 2023 will be better than 2022.
Many Canadians will say “good riddance” as 2022 draws to a close, a new poll shows, with more people comparing it unfavorably to 2021 than saying it was a better year.
At the beginning of December, the opinion research institute Leger asked Canadians about their impressions of the past year and their outlook for 2023.
It found that 31 percent of respondents felt this year was worse for them than last year, and just 21 percent said it was better. Another 46 percent said it was about the same, and three percent said they didn’t know or preferred not to answer.
A total of 1,526 Canadians participated in the December 9-11 web survey. No margin of error can be assigned because online surveys are not considered true random samples.
Leger executive vice president Christian Bourque noted that 2021 was a pandemic year where “there wasn’t really much you could do.”
“Everyone would have thought that 2022 would be better, right?” he said in an interview.
While widespread COVID-19 restrictions were lifted over the past year and millions returned to more normal routines and schedules, Bourque said concerns about inflation and the cost of living were the main reasons behind people’s bleaker outlook.
“I think there’s probably a level of fear in the Canadian public that we haven’t seen in a while,” he said.
He added that those most likely to view 2022 negatively are people aged 55 and over who may be on a steady income and wondering how to make ends meet, and people living in Atlantic Canada and British Columbia live, places hit by great weather disasters.
High inflation and Russia’s invasion of Ukraine earlier this year remain on Canadians’ minds as they ponder what 2023 could bring, the poll says.
When asked which events worry them most, 86 percent of respondents cited a combination of higher inflation, interest rates and prices, while 81 percent said they feared an economic recession.
The results show that 72 percent of respondents expressed concern about the escalation of the war in Ukraine and 68 percent worried about “catastrophic” weather events due to climate change.
Regarding COVID-19, the poll suggests far fewer Canadians are concerned about the virus, with just over half, or 52 percent, saying they are concerned about a resurgence.
More people, 57 percent, were concerned about the spread of a different, different virus.
While the Freedom Convoy protests in Ottawa and at several United States border crossings last winter proved to be a defining moment for the country in 2022, not many Canadians seem concerned that 2023 may bring more civil disobedience.
According to the survey, only 35 percent of respondents said they were concerned about such activities near where they live.
Not surprisingly, the poll shows that those most concerned about prices and the economy are supporters of the Conservative Party of Canada, whose leader Pierre Poilievre has made both his top priorities.
It also shows that more federal Liberal and New Democrat supporters are nervous about the war in Ukraine and climate change-related weather disasters than Tory voters.
In terms of how Canadians feel about 2023, the poll suggests the country is feeling more optimistic. According to this, 34 percent of respondents said they feel it will be better than 2022, compared to 22 percent who said it will be worse.
Another 40 percent said they think the new year will be about the same, and four percent didn’t answer or didn’t know.
This report from The Canadian Press was first published on December 24, 2022.