Seven in Ten (71%) Canadians “Angry” That Canada is Falling Behind in Vaccination Efforts, As Only 43% Believe Canada Will Meet PM’s Targets

Canadians Increasingly Pessimistic About Return to Normalcy as Expectations for Timeline of Travel, Public Gatherings, Spending and Economic Recovery Pushed Outward

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  • Darrell Bricker Global CEO, Public Affairs
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Toronto, ON, February 19, 2021 – Amid news reports that the UK, U.S. and other non G-7 countries are further along in their vaccination efforts than Canada is, a new Ipsos poll conducted exclusively for Global News has found that seven in ten (71%) Canadians agree (30% strongly/41% somewhat) that it makes them angry that Canada is falling behind other countries in its vaccination rates. The feeling of anger is stronger among men (75%) than among women (67%).

Many are prepared to give the Canadian government the benefit of the doubt, however, as 57% agree (17% strongly/40% somewhat) that the delays we are experiencing with the rollout of the vaccine in Canada are to be expected and are out of the control of the federal government and as such aren’t really their fault. On this point there is less uniformity: those in Atlantic Canada (70%) are most likely to agree, followed by Canadians living in Quebec (62%), Ontario (57%), British Columbia (55%), Alberta (47%) and Saskatchewan and Manitoba (46%).

Canadians overall are skeptical that the government will achieve its stated goal of vaccinating three million Canadians by the end of March and most Canadians by the end of September. Just 43% agree (7% strongly/36% somewhat) that they’re confident the government will meet this goal. Once again, Atlantic Canadians (55%) are most optimistic, while Albertans (33%) are the least. A slim majority (51%) of Canadians aged 18-34 believe the Prime Minister will meet his targets, while fewer of those age 35-54 (37%) or 55+ (43%) say the same.

While 42% of Canadians say that the speed at which a vaccine against COVID-19 was developed was better than what they had expected (compared to 16% who say it fell short of their expectations), the same can’t be said about the speed at which the vaccine is being rolled out in their own province. Just 6% say the vaccine rollout is going better than expected, while nearly half (44%) say it’s going worse than they expected. The remaining half (50%) say it’s progressing at an expected rate. Interestingly, Canadians aged 55+ are most likely to say the speed of vaccination rollout is going worse than expected (51%). Regionally, those in Ontario (51%) are the most likely to have been let down by the speed of the vaccination efforts, followed by those living in Alberta (46%), Saskatchewan and Manitoba (41%), British Columbia (39%), Quebec (39%) and Atlantic Canada (36%).


Most (66%) Would Take Vaccination Without Hesitation, but Concerns Remain

Two thirds (66%) of Canadians agree (39% strongly/27% somewhat) that they would personally take a COVID-19 vaccination as soon as they could without hesitation, with men (72%) being considerably more likely than women (60%) to say so. Those aged 55+ (75%) are also most likely to say they’d take the vaccine without hesitation compared to Canadians aged 35-54 (58%) or 18-34 (63%).  The proportion of Canadians who agree with this sentiment is down 6 points since last month, although still up 14 points since November.

That said, concerns remain:

  • A majority (58%) agrees (23% strongly/35% somewhat) that they are concerned about the potential long-term effects of taking a COVID-19 vaccine, a concern more pronounced among women (64%) and those aged 18-34 (63%) and 35-54 (62%).
  • Six in ten (58%) also agree (22% strongly/37% somewhat) that taking a vaccine that was created and approved so quickly makes them nervous, once again led by women (63%) and those aged 18-34 (64%) and 35-54 (62%).

Most Canadians are willing to take the vaccine despite these concerns, and in fact 62% continue to support mandatory vaccination, agreeing (29% strongly/33% somewhat) that it should be mandatory for all Canadians, down 2 points since last month, but still up 3 points since November. 

Canadians Readjust Timeline Expectations Given Slow Vaccine Rollout

Given recent delays in the rollout of the vaccine, Canadians have been forced to readjust their timeline expectations for when they might be able to receive the vaccine. Relatively few now believe the vaccine will even be made available to them before the summer, and only 20% believe they’ll opt to receive the vaccine before the summer (including 1% who have already been vaccinated). Moreover, a growing proportion (26%, up 8 points) believe they won’t even be given the option to be vaccinated this year.

Time Period

% of Canadians who think vaccine will be available to them

% of Canadians who will opt to receive vaccine if available

Already have my vaccine




5% (down 14)

3% (down 24)


18% (down 5)

16% (down 2)


37% (up 6)

31% (up 12)


13% (up 3)

14% (up 5)

Sometime in 2022

19% (up 9)

19% (up 8)

2023 or later

2% (down 1)

6% (up 2)


5% (unchanged)

13% (up 1)


Canadians are also pushing back their timelines to engage in the economy. In fact, a growing proportion of Canadians (17%, up 5 points) say they’ll never feel comfortable traveling internationally again, that they won’t feel comfortable gathering in public until 2023 or later (18%, up 7 points), that they won’t open their wallets again until 2022 (39%, up 8 points), and that the economy won’t rebound until 2023 (42%, up 13 points).


Time Period

% of Canadians comfortable with travelling internationally

% of Canadians comfortable with gathering in public for festivals, concerts, sporting events, etc.

% of Canadians returning to pre-COVID levels of spending 

% of Canadians believing economy will return to stable growth  


4% (down 3)

6% (down 2)

10% (down 7)

<1% (down 1)


3% (down 2)

8% (unchanged)

7% (down 2)

3% (down 3)


7% (down 2)

11% (down 3)

12% (down 2)

10% (down 3)


6% (down 3)

9% (up 1)

8% (down 1)

4% (down 4)

Sometime in 2022

37% (down 1)

41% (down 2)

39% (up 8)

34% (down 1)

2023 or later

27% (up 6)

18% (up 7)

14% (up 5)

42% (up 13)


17% (up 5)

7% (down 1)

11% (unchanged)

7% (down 1)



About the Study

These are some of the findings of an Ipsos poll conducted between February 8-10, 2021, on behalf of Global News. For this survey, a sample of 1,000 Canadians aged 18+ was interviewed online. Quotas and weighting were employed to ensure that the sample’s composition reflects that of the Canadian population according to census parameters. The precision of Ipsos online polls is measured using a credibility interval. In this case, the poll is accurate to within ± 3.5 percentage points, 19 times out of 20, had all Canadians aged 18+ been polled. The credibility interval will be wider among subsets of the population. All sample surveys and polls may be subject to other sources of error, including, but not limited to coverage error, and measurement error.

For more information on this news release, please contact:

Darrell Bricker
CEO, Ipsos Global Public Affairs
+1 416 324 2001
[email protected]


About Ipsos

Ipsos is the world’s third largest market research company, present in 90 markets and employing more than 18,000 people.

Our passionately curious research professionals, analysts and scientists have built unique multi-specialist capabilities that provide true understanding and powerful insights into the actions, opinions and motivations of citizens, consumers, patients, customers or employees. We serve more than 5000 clients across the world with 75 business solutions.

Founded in France in 1975, Ipsos is listed on the Euronext Paris since July 1st, 1999. The company is part of the SBF 120 and the Mid-60 index and is eligible for the Deferred Settlement Service (SRD).

ISIN code FR0000073298, Reuters ISOS.PA, Bloomberg IPS:FP

The author(s)
  • Darrell Bricker Global CEO, Public Affairs