With the recent outbreak of measles being reported in Vancouver and Washington State, a study conducted by the Angus Reid Institute has found that the majority of Canadians support mandatory vaccination for children in schools.
In total, 70% of respondents said that vaccinations should be mandatory while 24% said it should be the parent’s choice. Meanwhile, 7% fell in neither camp and said they were unsure.
When the question broadens, support for vaccination increases with 83% of respondents saying “they would vaccinate their children without hesitation”. However, a “significant segment” of respondents, 20%, said that choosing to vaccinate your children at all should be the parents’ decision.
In terms of how effective vaccinations are, 92% of Canadians said that inoculating individuals is an effective way of protecting the community from disease.
While 9-in-10 respondents believe that vaccinations offer protection, 1-in-4 say they are concerned about the risk of side effects from vaccinations, and nearly 1-in-3 say that the science on vaccinations isn’t “quite clear”.
However, a majority 68% of Canadians are unconcerned about side effects, saying there is “not something to worry about”.
While the country encourages diverse opinions, 74% of the respondents said that it was irresponsible for people to campaign against vaccination, while 21% disagreed.