Nearly half of Britons think UK Government is relaxing COVID rules too quickly

New research by Ipsos has found that nearly half of Britons believe that the Government is relaxing COVID restrictions too quickly.

The author(s)

  • Keiran Pedley Public Affairs
  • Gideon Skinner Public Affairs
  • Cameron Garrett Public Affairs
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New research by Ipsos has found that 46% of Britons believe that the UK Government is relaxing Coronavirus restrictions too quickly.

While half (51%) of those who voted Conservative in 2019 say that this is about the right time to relax coronavirus restrictions, still over a third (35%) of those voters believe that the restrictions are being relaxed too quickly. Labour voters are even more pessimistic with only 1 in 4 (25%) saying that this is about the right time to relax these restrictions. Throughout the pandemic, Ipsos data has consistently shown that few people think the Government was being too slow in removing restrictions.  However, concern that they are being relaxed too quickly is lower now than it was when lockdown measures were being lifted last July (when it was 58%).

As you may know, on Thursday 24th February the UK Government is due to relax Coronavirus restrictions in England. Do you think the Government is relaxing these measures too quickly, too slowly, or at about the right time? - IpsosAs restrictions are relaxed, 4 in 10 Britons say it is likely they will go to the shops (37%) even if they have tested positive for COVID-19 and the same proportion of workers feel they would go into work if they were positive. While 3 in 10 (30%) say they would probably not even go for a walk outside if they had tested positive. In contrast, half (49%) of Britons still oppose the government’s scrapping of the legal requirement to self-isolate following a positive COVID-19 test, with only 1 in 3 (33%) supporting it.

What would you do if you tested positive for Covid-19? - IpsosWhile the Government has highlighted the cost of doing so, just 3 in 10 (29%) Brits support ending the blanket provision of free test kits for COVID-19.

Do you support stopping the provision of free Covid-19 tests? - Ipsos

Keiran Pedley at Ipsos said of the findings:

“While the public is divided on whether or not this is the right time for the government to relax COVID-19 restrictions, it’s clear that the decision to stop providing free COVID-19 tests to anyone who requests them is not a popular one. It is notable that many Britons say they would go into work even after testing positive which may hamper plans to get people back into offices.”

Technical note

Ipsos interviewed a representative sample of 1,018 British adults aged 16-75. Interviews were conducted using its online omnibus on 22nd February 2022. Data are weighted to match the profile of the population. All polls are subject to a wide range of potential sources of error.

The author(s)

  • Keiran Pedley Public Affairs
  • Gideon Skinner Public Affairs
  • Cameron Garrett Public Affairs

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