We’ve talked about flattening the COVID-19 infection curve and a flattened recovery curve, and now we’re talking about flattening the worry curve.
David Coletto, CEO of Abacus Data, a polling and market research firm, says that his company has been tracking how Canadians feel about COVID-19, how stressed they are about it, how long isolation will go on for, and more.
Coletto says that the last week’s numbers hint at a flattening the worry curve for those most intensely anxious about the pandemic. So far, the highest level of worry peaked at 41 per cent in early April. Since then, he says, Canadians are starting to feel slightly less worried about things, as that number of those with the most intense worry about COVID-19 now sits at 34 per cent.
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What’s more, Coletto says that most people still think the worst of the pandemic is not yet over, but that number is dropping, signalling that perhaps some Canadians are beginning to see light at the end of this tunnel. That matters, because as more people begin to feel more optimistic about getting past COVID-19, that could mean increased pressure on the government to “re-open the economy.”
That said, Coletto adds that the latest Abacus poll of 2,500 Canadians suggests that a growing number of people feel the return to “normal” is a long-term thing, possibly more than six months’ out. And there’s also the gap between what the governments may open and “allow” people and businesses to do, and what people will be willing to do. For example, Quebec has said it may open schools as early as two weeks from now — but parents in Quebec say they may not send their kids back just yet.