COVID-19 SURVEY RESULTS: BORDERS

THIS SURVEY WAS DESIGNED BY DAVE TAGGART AS A PRIVATE INDIVIDUAL, AND NOT IN ANY OFFICIAL CAPACITY WITH ANY OF THE COMPANIES, CHARITIES OR GOVERNMENT AGENCIES WITH WHICH HE IS AFFILIATED.

SO IT’S NO SURPRISE THAT ‘BORDERS ARE A CONTROVERSIAL AND DIVISIVE TOPIC’. 

AT THE TIME OF THE SURVEY RUNNING, BORDERS WERE AT LEVEL 5 (FULL LOCKDOWN, YESSIR!) 

SO LET’S SEE YOU’RE SAY’N…

  • RESPONDENTS INDICATE A PREFERENCE FOR BORDER CONTROLS REMAINING AT LEVEL 5 UNTIL UK DAILY NEW CASES ARE <100/DAY. AT THE MOMENT THE UK IS AVERAGING ~600 NEW CASES PER DAY AND BORDER CONTROL IS AT A LEVEL 4 STATUS.

  • BELOW ~20/DAY, THE MODAL RESPONSE IS THAT THE BORDER SHOULD BE COMPLETELY UNRESTRICTED.

  • DIFFERENT GROUPS STRONGLY PREFER OPEN BORDERS (HIGHER INCOME/MALE/THOSE WHO HAVE LOST JOBS) OR CLOSED BORDERS (LOWER INCOME/FEMALE/70+/UNDER 30/THOSE WITH POOR HEALTH) – ALTHOUGH THE ‘AVERAGE’ IS NEUTRAL.

  • WHEN PLACING THE BORDER QUESTION INTO A WIDER CONTEXT OF ECONOMIC IMPACT AND RISK OF A SECOND WAVE, MANY RESPONDENTS PREFER A ‘MIDDLE GROUND’ OPTION OF OPEN, BUT TIGHTLY CONTROLLED BORDERS.

  • MOST RESPONDENTS FEEL GOVERNMENT HAS GOT THE BALANCE OF RESTRICTIONS ‘JUST RIGHT’.

  • WHERE PEOPLE FEEL GOVERNMENT HAS STRAYED, MORE PEOPLE FEEL POLICY HAS BEEN TOO RESTRICTIVE THAN TOO LAX.

  • RESPONDENTS FROM A HIGHER INCOME HOUSEHOLD HAD A CLEAR PREFERENCE AGAINST CLOSED BORDERS, IN CONTRAST TO THOSE OF A LOWER INCOME HOUSEHOLD WHO HELD A CLEAR PREFERENCE FOR CLOSED BORDERS. 

LET’S TALK GENDER

  • WOMEN AND MEN PRIORITISE BORDER CONTROL DIFFERENTLY

  • MEN HAVE A PREFERENCE FOR OPEN BORDERS UNTIL CHALLENGED WITH THE RISKS OF OPEN BORDERS TO MORTALITY AND LOCKDOWN.

  • MEN AND WOMEN AGREED THAT A ‘MIDDLE GROUND’ IS MOST SUITABLE WHEN CONSIDERING THE IMPACTS OF OPEN AND CLOSED BORDERS ON OTHER VARIABLES.

HOW ABOUT AGE?

BREAKING THE STEREOTYPE OF BEING ‘YOUNG AND RECKLESS’, UNDER 30S PREFER CLOSED BORDERS, EVEN IF IT HAS A DIRECT COST TO HOUSEHOLD INCOME. ONLY WITH INCREASING COSTS TO OPEN BORDERS DOES THE MIDDLE GROUND BECOME THE MOST ATTRACTIVE ALTERNATIVE, AS THOSE PREFERRING FULLY OPEN BORDERS ‘DEFECT’ TO PARTIALLY OPEN WITH QUARANTINE AND LIMITED NUMBERS.

OVER TO THE GOLDEN OLDIES

RESPONDENTS AGED 70 AND OVER CLEARLY PREFER CLOSED BORDERS, EVEN IF IT HAS A DIRECT COST TO HOUSEHOLD INCOME. MOST OVER 70S REJECT OPEN BORDERS ON PRINCIPLE, SUCH THAT EXPRESSING THEIR COST IN TERMS OF MORTALITY OR LOCKDOWN MAKES LITTLE DIFFERENCE TO AN ALREADY NEGATIVE VIEW.

OVERALL,

FOR MOST GROUPS, PLACING THE BORDER ISSUE INTO THE WIDER CONTEXT OF ITS IMPACT ON RISK OF NEW CASES AND THE ECONOMY LEADS TO CLOSER CONSENSUS TOWARDS A ‘MIDDLE GROUND’ PATH – HOWEVER, OVER 70S STILL PREFER CLOSED BORDERS REGARDLESS OF ECONOMIC COST.

  • KEEP THE RONA OUT!

YOU CAN DOWNLOAD THE FULL SURVEY RESULTS BELOW – HAPPY READING!

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