Federal Political Scene, Fall 2018: Liberals hold 6-point Lead over Conservatives, with NDP, Greens, and PPC Trailing

October 12, 2018 --- In our latest poll for Maclean's, the Liberals (40%) hold a six-point lead over the Conservatives (34%) among decided voters, with the NDP (12%) and Greens (7%) trailing. The newly-founded People's Party (PPC) registers 2%. Within Quebec, the BQ and Québec Debout record 15% and 1% support, respectively.

When considering the party leaders, four-in-ten (39%) Canadians feel that Justin Trudeau would make the best Prime Minister. Just over a quarter (27%) feel the same about Andrew Scheer. Less than one-in-ten (8%) prefer Jagmeet Singh. Just 5% feel that Maxime Bernier would be the best PM, but this level of support is more than double the voter support for his party. Two-in-ten Canadians are unsure which of the party leaders would make the best PM.

Given the newness of the PPC, it is not surprising that Maxime Bernier's party currently ranks low among decided voters. However, the poll suggests there is potential for the party to grow beyond its current standing. Notably, 19% of Conservative voters already consider it a second choice. And, among the five current issues explored in this poll, 5% of Canadians share the PPC's stances on all issues and 11% share all but one of the party's policy positions.

Among the key findings:

  • Almost six-in-ten (58%) Canadians feel that interprovincial trade barriers should be eliminated, whereas just 12% feel they should be maintained.
  • Half (50%) of Canadians feel that health care should continue to be primarily funded and provided by public sector institutions, and only a quarter (25%) feel that people should be able to pay to receive health care services from private sector care providers.
  • Just under half (49%) of Canadians feel that supply management is good for Canada, whereas, only two-in-ten (20%) feel it is bad.
  • Four-in-ten (39%) Canadians are supportive of regional development and aid programs, whereas a quarter (24%) are opposed.
  • The public is split on the federal government's approach to multiculturalism, as 38% feel it should continue to help ethnocultural communities and celebrate diversity and 37% feel it is going too far on this front - causing division and disunity.

Read the Maclean's article: Trudeau's Next Challenge: Free Trade at Home

For more details, including regional results, please see our report: Federal Political Scene, Fall 2018

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Common Good Retirement Initiative - Pollara Survey of Not-For-Profit Employers and Employees finds Strong Demand for Flexible Sector-Wide Retirement Plan

October 5, 2018 --- The Common Good Retirement Initiative today released the results of their national survey of employers, employees, contractors, and freelancers in the not-for-profit and charitable sector. On behalf of Common Good, Pollara Strategic Insights designed, executed, and analysed the results of the study, which was conducted from May to September 2018.

The survey was designed to identify employer and employee needs, challenges, attitudes, and preferences regarding retirement savings and planning - and, ultimately, to provide guidance to Common Good as they strive to build the best possible retirement plan for the sector. In total, 441 employers and 504 employees (including contract and freelance employees) from the sector participated in the survey.

Among the key findings:

  • Six-in-ten non-profit or charitable sector employees say their employer offers no retirement benefits.
  • More than eight-in-ten sector employees feel that offering a workplace retirement plan should be a priority for employers.
  • Plan portability as well as applicability to all types of workers (including freelancers) were among the most valued and preferred features for a sector retirement plan.

To learn more, download the report from the Common Good website.

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With recreational cannabis legalization on the horizon, Canadians accept the new policy despite concerns

October 3, 2018 --- With two weeks to go until recreational marijuana is legal, a slim majority (54%) of adult Canadians accepts the new policy. This acceptance is based on a third (35%) providing explicit approval and two-in-ten (19%) expressing ambivalence - effectively providing tacit approval. Four-in-ten (42%) disapprove, and 4% are unsure.

Majority acceptance exists despite the fact that 53% of Canadians have some concerns about legalization and relatively few (13%) report using cannabis in the past 12 months.

Notably, based on expressed intent, legalization appears likely to spur minimal increase in marijuana usage – especially regular usage – at least in the early stages. Less than two-in-ten (17%) say they are likely to buy marijuana through the new legal retail system, including just 5% of those who have never tried it. Among those expressing some likelihood of buying legally, just 12% expect to do so on a regular basis. However, post-legalization opportunities, experiences, and orthodoxy may impact public attitudes and behaviours over the course of time.

These are some of the findings included in the Wave 3 report of Pollara's subscription-based syndicated study The Public Lens: Legalizing Marijuana – the definitive barometer of public opinion on one of Canada’s most prominent public policy topics. Since March 2017, subscribers to the study have received fresh, semi-annual insights into public and user engagement, perceptions, and attitudes about marijuana as well as their expectations, concerns, support levels, and preferences regarding legalization and various policy elements (ex. timelines, age limits, retail approaches, home growing regulations, pricing, taxation, pardons, edibles, oils, and infused beverages).

For additional research findings, see our short excerpt from the Wave 3 report.

The next wave of the study will be fielded 1-3 months after legalization, with a focus on post-legalization perceptions, experiences, usage patterns, and public/consumer demands on governments, producers, brands, and retail operations. Results will only be available to subscribers. If you are interested in subscribing, please contact us.

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