Majority support for 'no jab, no job' across several sectors - new poll

Author
Derek Cheng, NZ Herald,
Publish Date
Thu, 14 Oct 2021, 1:36PM
The Government is making vaccination mandatory for teachers, including ECE staff, and a new poll shows strong support for the move. (Photo / 123rf)
The Government is making vaccination mandatory for teachers, including ECE staff, and a new poll shows strong support for the move. (Photo / 123rf)

Majority support for 'no jab, no job' across several sectors - new poll

Author
Derek Cheng, NZ Herald,
Publish Date
Thu, 14 Oct 2021, 1:36PM

A new poll shows strong support for a "no jab, no job" mandate for teachers and health workers, as well as a higher willingness to get vaccinated since the outbreak started.

This week the Government announced a mandatory vaccination order for hundreds of thousands of health and education workers.

According to the Talbot Mills Research poll, 79 per cent of those polled agreed with a vaccine mandate for health workers, while 72 per cent agreed to one for teachers.

There was majority support for such a mandate across many workforces, with the highest support being for frontline border workers (79 per cent), people flying overseas (76 per cent) hospitality workers (71 per cent), supermarket staff (70 per cent), and people flying within New Zealand (70 per cent).

From February next year, Air NZ says all international passengers will need to be fully vaccinated, but the airline is yet to decide what to do about domestic passengers.

The Government is still considering whether vaccination status will be needed to be shown to enter hospitality venues, but it will be needed for large scale events such as summer festivals.

The poll also showed a jump in the proportion of those wanting to get vaccinated since the Delta outbreak started.

In the three months to August, between 80 to 82 per cent had either had at least one dose, or were definitely or probably going to get vaccinated.

This jumped to 89 per cent in September and 91 per cent in October.

The highest ranking reasons to get vaccinated was "fear of a more lethal new variant" followed by "concern I would be a risk to others including children who cannot be vaccinated".

Limitations on the unvaccinated - such as job loss if an employer required vaccination, the inability to travel overseas, and being barred from hospitality - ranked higher than "fear of catching Covid".

Only 31 per cent supported the sentiment that people shouldn't lose their ability to travel if they are unvaccinated.

A majority of those polled (56 per cent) supported the Government, rather than individual businesses, deciding who can access restaurants and pubs based on their vaccination status.

Those "definitely" not going to get a vaccine also dropped from 7 per cent in June to 4 per cent in October.

The most common reason was "side effects/not safe/heard bad things", though the proportion of those ticking this box dropped dramatically between September and October.

More people than last month - 31 per cent compared with 26 per cent - want the borders restrictions to ease once everyone has had a reasonable chance to get vaccinated.

But a majority (62 per cent) still want 90 per cent plus vaccination coverage before that should happen because of the risk of overwhelming the health system.

The poll included 1209 people aged 18 and over, and was conducted between September 28 and October 5, which included the Government's decision to allow outdoor picnics in Auckland at level 3, but before the mandatory vaccination order for health and education workers was announced.

Previously known as UMR, the polling company is best known for its research for the Labour Party, but it also does polling for a number of commercial clients.

These results have previously made available to their clients, but have now been released to the Herald with permission as part of the 90 Per Cent Project.

The poll also showed the National Party continuing to bleed supporters to Act: Act was on up 3 percentage points to 16 per cent, while National had dropped 4 percentage points to 22 per cent.

Labour was on 46 per cent, the Greens on 7 per cent, NZ First on 3.8 per cent, and te Pati Maori on 1.9 per cent.