NUPGE poll finds almost universal support for bringing long-term care under the Canada Health Act

86% of Canadians support bringing long-term care under the Canada Health Act; only 2% oppose this action.

Ottawa (26 May 2020) — After 3 months of daily news about COVID-19, we are seeing the major impact the pandemic is having, not only on people's lives and work, but also on how they see the world moving forward. People clearly want change and specifically how we treat our elderly in Canada. This is one of the findings from a national poll, commissioned by the National Union of Public and General Employees (NUPGE) and conducted by Abacus Data. 

The Abacus poll also found that 

  • 90% of Canadians are aware of the deaths in long-term care facilities.
  • 86% are in favour of bringing long-term care facilities into the Canada Health Act; only 2% oppose this action.
  • 81% of Canadians want to see the government invest whatever money and resources are needed to rebuild health care and other public services that were previously cut/minimized.
  • 78% support increasing funding for long-term care.

"This poll backs up what we've been saying," says Larry Brown, NUPGE President. "These polling numbers show clearly what Canadians want from the government," said Brown. "Governments that are considering austerity measures as we transition to a new reality should be paying attention. Canadians will no longer put themselves or their families' health at risk."

"We are seeing that people are looking for serious, permanent changes to avoid the tragic results as we've seen over the last several months. They want to ensure we never go back to the way things were before the outbreak. And they see the federal government playing a significiant role in fixing our system of health care," Brown added. 

"Moving long-term care under the Canada Health Act will provide Canadians with the national standards and public accountability that has been seriously lacking for decades," said Brown. "Governments have no right to ignore such strong public opinion on this issue."

The survey was conducted by Abacus Research, with 1,800 Canadian adults between the dates of May 14 to 18, 2020. The data were weighted according to census data to ensure that the sample matched Canada’s population according to age, gender, educational attainment, and region. Totals may not add up to 100 due to rounding. The margin of error for a comparable probability-based, random sample of the same size is +/- 2.29, 19 times out of 20.

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The National Union of Public and General Employees (NUPGE) is one of Canada's largest labour organizations with over 390,000 members. Our mission is to improve the lives of working families and to build a stronger Canada by ensuring our common wealth is used for the common good. — NUPGE