VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) — More Canadians are saying they think the worst of the COVID-19 pandemic is yet to come, with British Columbians the most likely to hold this pessimistic view.
Back in June, almost half of Canadians were optimistic but in September that number dropped to 37 per cent, according to a new poll.
“I think there was an expectation for most Canadians that we were almost on the way out of this crisis,” explains Research Co. President Mario Canseco.
“The case numbers were definitely better in most parts of the country. Now we have a situation, just a few days before kids are going to go back to school, where the number of Canadians who believe that the worst of the pandemic is behind us has dropped drastically. It’s certainly a big change from the trend we saw earlier this year where more Canadians expected things to get better.”
Canseco says two things seem to be driving people to lose confidence that better days are ahead.
First, cases have been climbing in a number of provinces over the summer.
“I think there was an expectation from many Canadians that the numbers were just going to continue dropping and eventually disappear.”
Second, he says there is anxiety about how colder weather and flu season could complicate efforts to bend the curve back downward.
In B.C. 61 per cent of residents say they think the worst os the pandemic “definitely” or “probably” lies ahead.
“I think the fact that the cases are climbing upward in British Columbia is making many residents feel uneasy about what lies ahead,” Canseco says.
The province with the rosiest outlook is Ontario, where 40 per cent of those surveyed think things will worsen.
But confidence in how the province is handling the pandemic here is B.C. remains high.
“British Columbia’s an interesting case, we do have the highest level of satisfaction with the way the local government has dealt with the pandemic,” Canseco says.
Eighty-three percent of people sais they are very or somewhat satisfied, a number that hasn’t budged since June.