In February 2022, the federal government invoked the Emergencies Act to help clear the trucker convoy from downtown Ottawa. The Public Order Emergency Commission is reviewing the use of these emergency powers in a series of public hearings, but the hearings don’t seem to be changing many minds. These findings come from INNOVATIVE’s latest online survey of 2,236 Canadian citizens, weighted to n=1000, conducted from November 4 to 14, 2022.
A slim majority supports use of Emergencies Act
Just over half of Canadians say they support the decision to invoke the Emergencies Act (51%), while about 1-in-4 say they oppose the decision (26%). Net support is up slightly (+4%) when compared to the height of the protests in February.
Notably, strong opposition to the use of the Emergencies Act has abated somewhat (currently 18%, down from 23% in February).
Canadians who are paying attention have stronger opinions
About 6-in-10 Canadians say they are following the news about the Emergencies Act “very closely” (23%) or somewhat closely (38%). Fewer Canadians are paying attention than they were at the height of the protests in February, when 7-in-10 were paying attention (69%).
Those who are most strongly in favour of or opposed to the use of the Emergencies Act are paying much more attention than everyone else. Among those who say they are following the use of the Emergencies Act very closely, 55% strongly support the decision to invoke the Emergencies Act and 33% strongly oppose it.
People with weaker views are following the issue less closely.
The people watching the hearings most closely already have strong views on where they stand. Those who are tuning in are more likely looking for reinforcement, not enlightenment.