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Ontario government and NDP negotiators looking for a way out of their budget impasse should pay attention to results of a new poll conducted by Angus Reid Public Opinion on behalf of the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE) Ontario, which shows voters would rather increase taxes on corporations and the wealthy than have public service reductions and cutbacks.

This poll is encouraging for anyone worried about the budget, because it shows voters want the government to boost revenue with targeted tax measures for corporations and the most wealthy, so they can avoid any cuts to services and jobs,” said CUPE Ontario Secretary-Treasurer Candace Rennick, commenting on the poll.

If this budget is not changed,” Rennick says, “we will see hospital bed closures and staff cuts, school closures and layoffs, and the closing of childcare centres in many communities. This poll confirms there is real support by voters for alternate ways to balance the budget.”

The poll, conducted by Angus-Reid Public Opinion for CUPE Ontario, surveyed 1,500 Ontarian adults online between April 2-3, 2012. The margin of error was +/- 2.5% 19 times out of 20. CUPE Ontario represents more than 230,000 workers in school boards, health care, municipalities, social services and universities.


Selected poll results:

  • Which is a preferred budget trade off? Raise the tax rate on corporations or impose budget cuts on school boards that could result in closures?
    61% raise tax on corporations/19% impose budget cuts on school boards
  • Which is a preferred budget trade off? Raise taxes on Corporations or keep hospital budgets to a zero% increase which could lead to bed closures and staff cuts?
    67% raise taxes on corporations/16% keep hospital budgets to zero increase
  • Would you support a new tax on earners over $250,000 if it allowed the government to provide a cost-of-living increase to those on social assistance?
    Yes: 76%         No: 16%           Don’t Know: 7%
  • Would you support reinstating the capital tax on banks and insurance companies if it allowed the government to avoid cuts to public services and jobs?
    Yes: 61%         No: 21%           Don’t Know: 17%