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Most people in Lower Mainland support bailouts for restaurants, bars impacted by pandemic: poll

FILE: Hundreds of restaurants took part in Dine Out Vancouver 2019. (Courtesy Dine Out Vancouver via Facebook)
Summary

A new poll shows most people in Vancouver support bailouts for restaurants and bars affected by the pandemic

More than 75 per cent believe restaurants, cafes and bars should be eligible for government-funded support

It's a different story for other key parts of the tourism industry

VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) — Metro Vancouver residents support government bailouts for restaurants and bars affected by the pandemic above other tourism-related businesses, according to a new poll.

More than 75 per cent of respondents to a Research Co. poll released Friday believe restaurants, cafes, and bars should be eligible for government-funded support.

“Metro Vancouverites appear particularly concerned with the pandemic leading to job losses in the restaurant sector,” says Mario Canseco, President of Research Co.

It’s a different story for other key parts of the tourism industry.

“When it comes to the industry that brings people to Vancouver, there’s a higher level of resistance from residents,” Canesco says. “There’s suddenly 45 per cent who believe that airlines should be part of a broader government bailout and only 40 per cent who look the same way at cruise ship operators.”

The poll asked businesses and corporations tied to the tourism industry if it should be buttressed with taxpayer money as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

It found just 27 per cent would consider bailouts for Airbnb hosts, who have taken a big hit during the pandemic, Canseco says.

“We know housing has been a very grave concern in Metro Vancouver for the past four to five years, and when you are looking at this as a component of the tourism industry, most residents are looking at other things, and are having Airbnb hosts at the bottom of the list,” he adds.

“The sense we get from Metro Vancouverites, let’s save everybody who’s working here. Let’s save those industries that also benefit residents and not only tourism,” Canseco says.

A third of those polled would consider government support for ride-hailing companies, though.

More than 70 per cent also supported help for individual boutiques and stores, as did half for retail chain outlets with five or more stores in the country.