By now, most Canadians are aware of the devastating and costly consequences of the coronavirus pandemic.
In fact, a new poll by the Angus Reid Institute shows that more than a quarter of Canadians (26 per cent) agree that Canada should do more to combat the pandemic, including banning all or most imported drugs.
The poll shows that only 10 per cent of respondents say they are confident that the government will do enough to fight the pandemics.
However, that is only the tip of the iceberg.
The Angus Reid poll also found that Canadians are very divided about the future of their drug policies, with almost half (47 per cent), and a majority (57 per cent):The poll also asked Canadians whether the government should legalize or decriminalize cannabis, which the government has yet to decide on.
A majority (54 per cent).
A majority (52 per cent)?
Another question asked respondents whether the federal government should change its drug policies to focus more on treating people with substance use disorders, which is not yet legal in Canada.
A plurality (44 per cent, down from 51 per cent in November).
But while a majority of Canadians want to see drug policy change, only 27 per cent are in favour of legalising and regulating cannabis, while 38 per cent would support decriminalizing it.
And even more Canadians (34 per cent support decriminalization while 41 per cent oppose) say they do not know enough about the issue to make an informed decision.
Overall, Canada’s drug policies have been badly damaged by the pandeman.
According to the latest Angus Reid Global Drug Survey, Canadians are more likely to think that their government has done too little to address the crisis than that they have done enough.
In a survey conducted in November, for example, half of Canadians thought the federal and provincial governments have done too much (49 per cent); the same proportion believed the provinces and territories have done a good enough job (49%).
The Angus Forum conducted similar polls in June and September, with similar results.
In each case, more than half of respondents said they thought the government had done enough to help tackle the pandemaker.
A majority of the public (54 percent) believe the government’s policies have gone too far in treating drug users with more lenient and harsh penalties, compared with 40 per cent who believe it has done a reasonable job.
This has led to widespread criticism of the government.
And Canadians are even more likely than Americans to think Canada has gone too much in the wrong direction (53 per cent versus 43 per cent respectively).
As with other issues facing the country, Canadians have their own reasons for distrust.
Just under half (51 per cent)—a slight increase from the October poll—believe the Conservatives are not doing enough to tackle the crisis.
In contrast, nearly a third (34 percent) said they were not convinced by the Liberals, while a further 26 per cent thought the NDP and New Democrats had not done enough in tackling the pandemate.
On the other hand, a majority—53 per in total—said that the Conservatives and New Democratic Party have done more to address drug abuse, with a majority saying the Tories have done the most (65 per cent and 55 per cent for the NDP, respectively).
The Angus Forum also asked respondents to rate the importance of each issue, such as crime and health care, and how well each government was handling those two issues.
For example, a plurality (46 per cent among Canadians) said the government was doing a good job addressing crime; however, the Angus Forum poll found that only 36 per cent believe the federal Government is doing enough.
A third of respondents also thought that the Liberals and NDP had done a poor job addressing the issue.
In short, Canadians don’t like their government, and the Angus Institute poll shows it.
But the Conservatives, who have been at the forefront of this country’s response to the pandemia, are proving to be the only party that has the public’s full support.
The Liberals, who are the most likely to be trusted on the issue of crime, and who are in fact the party of the health care sector, are the least likely to trust the government on these issues.