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74% of Canadians want bargaining between governments, unions to be transparent: Ipsos poll

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Seventy-four per cent of Canadians believe that bargaining between governments and unions should happen transparently, according to a new Ipsos poll.

Twenty-six per cent of respondents, however, believe that negotiations should happen behind closed doors, according to the survey, which was conducted on behalf of Global News.

“The are some people who believe that the bargaining between the governments and the unions, which represent the government employees, should happen transparently so that the public can follow along,” said Jennifer McLeod Macey, Ipsos’ vice-president of public affairs.

“Others feel that it should happen behind closed doors so that people can speak frankly and honestly with each other, with their confidentiality being protected.”

READ MORE: How the dispute between Ontario and teachers’ unions could evolve

According to McLeod Macey, the most surprising thing about the survey results is that attitudes don’t differ significantly between demographics — there’s a strong majority of people who believe that bargaining talks should be transparent across the board.

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“We have these overwhelming majorities across the [geographic] regions, ever so slightly higher in Ontario, where we are, of course, in the middle of a major labour dispute,” McLeod Macey said.

Right now, Ontario’s four teachers’ unions are all engaged in some form of job action. Ontarians who responded to the survey leaned more toward transparency at 78 per cent, while 22 per cent veered toward confidentiality.

READ MORE: Ontario’s 4 teachers’ unions are engaged in job actions. Here’s what they’re fighting for

Among all the age groups surveyed, millennials leaned most toward transparency at 80 per cent, while Gen Z leaned the least toward transparency at 68 per cent.

“What I would say about the millennials is that this cohort tends to be more open,” McLeod Macey said.

“They have been online longer than older Canadians…and they’re more accustomed to sharing and putting it all out there.”

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McLeod Macey said the findings signify a desire to be kept informed and to know what’s happening.

“[Canadians] are being affected by these negotiations and the bargaining,” she added.

“They want to be aware so that they know what’s happening and can ensure everything is moving at the speed and in the direction that it should be.”

Methodology: These are some of the findings of an Ipsos poll conducted between January 24th and 27th, 2020, on behalf of Global News. For this survey, a sample of 1,000 Canadians aged 18+ was interviewed online. Quotas and weighting were employed to ensure that the sample’s composition reflects that of the Canadian population according to census parameters. The precision of Ipsos online polls is measured using a credibility interval. In this case, the poll is accurate to within ± 3.5 percentage points, 19 times out of 20, had all Canadians aged 18+ been polled. The credibility interval will be wider among subsets of the population. All sample surveys and polls may be subject to other sources of error, including, but not limited to coverage error, and measurement error.

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