Here’s how the coronavirus has affected Canadians’ trust in people

Pandemics have the power to change our relationship with the world and all its moving parts.

That includes everything from our lovers to our door handles.

Indeed, COVID-19 is hitting us where it hurts: our trust.

In early May, the Proof Strategies CanTrust Index sought to find out how Canadians’ trust in various societal groups had changed since January. Doctors, scientists, corporate leaders, and the media were among the subjects in question.

According to the survey, 87 per cent of Canadians trust doctors. That’s up from 76 per cent at the beginning of the year. Canadians also look up to scientists more than they did in January – 82 per cent now compared to 76 then.

“Trust for doctors and scientists was leading all other places but now it’s really gone into the trust stratosphere, if you will, in terms of how highly trusted these individuals have become,” said Proof CEO Bruce MacLellan.

“It’s truly remarkable. We have not seen that level of trust in any individual, organization or institution at all in our past research.”

Turns the government has also earned our trust. Whereas a paltry 33 per cent of those surveyed in January expressed faith in the feds, 40 per cent do so now. Must be the corona cash. Small businesses, non-profit organizations and charities are also seen more favourably now than before.

Meanwhile, CEOs, teachers, and the media have seen their reputations drop. Just 33 per cent of Canadians believe the news, which is down from 40 per cent in January. And although teachers remain trustworthy at 59 per cent, that number dropped from 65 per cent just a few months ago.

As for CEOs? Borderline Judas reputation: just 30 per cent of Canadians trust business leaders. That’s a dramatic drop from two years ago, when 55 per cent of Canadians had faith in the rich.