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Only 42% of Victorians rate the Victorian Police highly for their ethics and honesty

This special Roy Morgan Snap SMS survey was conducted with a Victoria-wide cross-section of 2,278 Victorians aged 18+ conducted on Tuesday September 15 – Wednesday September 16, 2020.

The fourth Roy Morgan Snap SMS survey on Victoria’s Stage 4 restrictions shows  only 42% of Victorians rate the Victorian Police either ‘Very high’ (11%) or ‘High’ (31%) for honesty and ethical standards. 25% rate the Police either ‘Low’ (13%) or ‘Very low’ (12%). A further 33% are in the middle and award the Police an Average rating for ethics and honesty.

Women rate the ethics and honesty of Victorian Police more highly than do men,  with 46% of women rating Victorian Police either ‘Very high’ (12%) or ‘High’ (34%) compared to 38% of men rating either ‘Very high’ (11%) or ‘High’ (27%).

Older Victorians have a more positive view of the Victorian Police than their younger counterparts with 54% of 50-64 year olds, 45% of 35-49 year olds and people aged 65+ rating them either ‘Very high’ or ‘High’ compared to only 31% for those aged under 35.

This research on the view of Victorians on the ethics and honesty of Victorian Police was conducted after several videos involving people allegedly breaking State of Emergency laws throughout Victoria were publicised in the media, including the arrest of a pregnant woman in her home in Ballarat and a woman being forcibly removed from her car after refusing to provide her driver’s license.

In the Roy Morgan Image of Professions survey in 2017 Victorians rated Police as the 8th most trusted profession with 76% of respondents awarding the Police ‘Very high’ (27%) or ‘High’ (49%) marks. Police were behind only Nurses, Doctors, Pharmacists, School Teachers, Engineers, Dentists and State Supreme Court Judges.

An increasing majority of 55% of (up 2% in a week) say Melbourne residents should now be able to visit the homes of immediate family members. There are majorities of women (53%), men (58%), Melburnians (56%), Country Victorians (54%) and – for the first time – all age groups agree they should be able to visit.

Victorians are now evenly split on whether Melburnians should now be able to travel more than 5km from home with 50% saying yes (up 4% in a week) and 50% saying no (down 4%).

However, among Melbournians an increased majority of 53% say they should be free to travel more than 5 km from their home – up from 50% a week ago. This compares to slightly more than a third of people in Country Victoria (36%) who say Melburnians should now be able to travel more than 5km from home. This is again the largest gap between Melburnians and Country Victorians of any question.

People surveyed were each asked the following questions to determine their attitudes towards the current Victorian Government Stage 4 directives with changes compared to a week ago.

  • Question 1: “Melbourne residents are currently banned from visiting the homes of immediate family members with the exception of singles, delivering care or essential services. Should Melbourne residents now be able to visit the homes of their immediate families?” Yes 55% (up 2% from a week ago) cf. No 45% (down 2%).

  • Question 2: “At present Melbourne has a curfew from 9pm to 5am, should the curfew end now or not?” Yes 35% (down 2%) cf. No 65% (up 2%).

  • Question 3: “Melbourne residents are currently restricted from travelling more than 5km from their homes for exercise or buying essential items such as food. Should Melbourne residents now be free to travel more than 5km from their home?” Yes 50% (up 4%) cf. No 50% (down 4%).

  • Question 4 (NEW QUESTION): From what you know or have heard, how would you rate Victorian Police for honesty and ethical standards?” Very High (11%), High (31%), Average (33%), Low (13%), Very Low (12%).

Support for the night-time curfew from 9pm to 5am remains strong with 65% of Victorians saying the curfew in Melbourne should not end compared to 35% who say it should.

This special Roy Morgan Snap SMS survey was conducted with a Victoria-wide cross-section of 2,278 Victorians aged 18+ conducted on Tuesday September 15 – Wednesday September 16, 2020.

The survey was conducted six weeks after the introduction of stringent Stage 4 restrictions in Melbourne and a week after Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews announced a two-week extension to the Stage 4 lockdown. The current restrictions are now due to end in just over two weeks’ time although Country Victoria has scored a reprieve with restrictions wound back to Stage 2 level this week.


ALP & L-NP supporters have the same views on Victorian Police, but L-NP supporters want to be able to visit their immediate families, and the end of travel restrictions and the night-time curfew

Nearly half of ALP supporters (46%) and L-NP supporters (46%) rate the police either ‘Very high’ or ‘High’ for ethics and honesty compared to 41% of Greens supporters.

However, there are large gaps between L-NP supporters and ALP supporters when it comes to the Stage 4 restrictions including visiting their immediate families, ending travel restrictions and the night-time curfew.

  • A large majority of 71% (up 2% in a week) of L-NP supporters say Melburnians should now be able to visit the homes of their immediate families compared to 46% (down 4%) of ALP supporters and 53% (up 18%) of Greens supporters;

  • Two-thirds of L-NP supporters 66% (up 9%) say Melbourne residents should now be able to travel more than 5km from their home compared to 38% (down 8%) of ALP supporters and just 34% (down 1%) of Greens supporters;

  • For the first time a slim majority of L-NP supporters 52% (up 11%) say the Melbourne night-time curfew from 9pm-5am should end now compared to just 27% (down 5%) of ALP supporters and only 24% (down 6%) of Greens supporters.


Roy Morgan CEO Michele Levine says Victorian Police have been attracting a degree of controversy in recent weeks in the wake of several videos highlighted by the media of alleged COVID-19 lawbreakers being subject to potentially ‘heavy-handed’ police action:

“The Victorian Police have been under the spotlight in recent weeks with videos circulating of a pregnant woman in Ballarat being arrested at home for a Facebook post, old ladies being confronted on park benches for not wearing masks, a woman being forcibly removed from her car after refusing to provide her driver’s license and a man under arrest in Epping who appeared to have his head stomped by one of the arresting police officers and was subsequently put into an induced coma.

“It should be recognised that the police officer accused of stomping on the man under arrest in Epping has been suspended and is now under criminal investigation for the actions taken during the arrest by the Independent Broad-based Anti-corruption Commission.

“Given the media attention paid to these incidents in locked down Melbourne it is no surprise that fewer Victorians than three years ago rate the Police either ‘Very high’ or ‘High’ for ethics and honesty – now at 42%. This compares to a record high 76% in mid-2017 in the nationally conducted Roy Morgan Image of Professions survey.

“Views on the Victorian Police are nearly identical for ALP and L-NP supporters, but younger Victorians are the least likely to rate the ‘Police highly. Only 31% of Victorians aged under 35 rate the Police either ‘Very high’ (4%) or ‘High’ (27%) for ethics and honesty while 32% rate them either ‘Low’ (16%) or ‘Very low’ (16%) – easily the highest of any age group.

“When it comes to the Stage 4 restrictions the gap continues to widen between L-NP supporters and ALP supporters. A majority of L-NP supporters want to be able to visit the homes of their immediate family members (71%), travel freely around Melbourne (66%) and an end to the 9pm-5am night-time curfew (52%). Majorities of ALP supporters say all three of these restrictions should continue.”


Question 1:

Should Melbourne residents now be able to visit the homes of their immediate families?
By Party Vote (Federal)

Should Melburnians be able to visit the homes of their immediate families?

Source: Roy Morgan Special Snap SMS Poll of Victorians conducted on Tuesday September 15 to Wednesday September 16, 2020, n=2,278 with over 1,000 respondents each asked 3 questions. Base: Victorians aged 18+.


Should Melbourne residents now be able to visit the homes of their immediate families?
By Gender & Age

Victorians 18+

Gender

Age

Aug 25-26,
2020

Sep 1-2,
2020

Sep 8-9,
2020

Sep 15-16,
2020

Men

Women

Under
35

35-49

50-64

65+

%

%

%

%

%

%

%

%

%

%

Yes

43

47

53

55

58

53

53

52

61

59

No

57

53

47

45

42

47

47

48

39

41

TOTAL

100

100

100

100

100

100

100

100

100

100


Should Melbourne residents now be able to visit the homes of their immediate families?
By Melbourne & Country Victoria

Victorians
18+

Melbourne

Country Victoria

%

%

%

Yes

55

56

54

No

45

44

46

TOTAL

100

100

100


Should Melbourne residents now be able to visit the homes of their immediate families?
By Party Vote (Federal)

Victorian
Electors

Party Vote

L-NP

ALP

Greens

Ind/Others

Can’t say

%

%

%

%

%

%

Yes

56

71

46

53

56

48

No

44

29

54

47

44

52

TOTAL

100

100

100

100

100

100


Question 2:

From Sunday night Melbourne is to have a curfew from 9pm to 5am, should the curfew end or not?
By Gender & Age

Victorians 18+

Gender

Age

Aug 25-26,
2020

Sep 1-2,
2020

Sep 8-9,
2020

Sep 15-16,
2020

Men

Women

Under
35

35-49

50-64

65+

%

%

%

%

%

%

%

%

%

%

Yes

28

39

37

35

41

29

36

36

33

34

No

72

61

63

65

59

71

64

64

67

66

TOTAL

100

100

100

100

100

100

100

100

100

100


From Sunday night Melbourne is to have a curfew from 9pm to 5am, should the curfew end or not?
By Melbourne & Country Victoria

Victorians
18+

Melbourne

Country Victoria

%

%

%

Yes

35

37

29

No

65

63

71

TOTAL

100

100

100


From Sunday night Melbourne is to have a curfew from 9pm to 5am, should the curfew end or not?
By Party Vote (Federal)

Victorian
Electors

Party Vote

L-NP

ALP

Greens

Ind/Others

Can’t say

%

%

%

%

%

%

Yes

35

52

27

24

40

27

No

65

48

73

76

60

73

TOTAL

100

100

100

100

100

100


Question 3:

Should Melbourne residents now be free to travel more than 5km from their home?
By Gender & Age

Victorians 18+

Gender

Age

Aug 25-26,
2020

Sep 1-2,
2020

Sep 8-9,
2020

Sep 15-16,
2020

Men

Women

Under
35

35-49

50-64

65+

%

%

%

%

%

%

%

%

%

%

Yes

29

40

46

50

50

50

48

49

47

58

No

71

60

54

50

50

50

52

51

53

42

TOTAL

100

100

100

100

100

100

100

100

100

100


Should Melbourne residents now be free to travel more than 5km from their home?
By Melbourne & Country Victoria

Victorians
18+

Melbourne

Country Victoria

%

%

%

Yes

50

53

36

No

50

47

64

TOTAL

100

100

100


Should Melbourne residents now be free to travel more than 5km from their home?
By Party Vote (Federal)

Victorian
Electors

Party Vote

L-NP

ALP

Greens

Ind/Others

Can’t say

%

%

%

%

%

%

Yes

49

66

38

34

58

62

No

51

34

62

66

42

38

TOTAL

100

100

100

100

100

100


Question 4:

Ratings of Victorian Police for honesty and ethical standards by Gender & Age

Views on the Honesty & Ethics of Victorian Police - By Gender & Age

Source: Roy Morgan Special Snap SMS Poll of Victorians conducted on Tuesday September 15 to Wednesday September 16, 2020, n=2,278 with over 1,000 respondents each asked 3 questions. Base: Victorians aged 18+.


From what you know or have heard, how would you rate Victorian Police for honesty and ethical standards?
By Gender & Age

Victorians 18+

Gender

Age

Sep 15-16,
2020

Men

Women

Under
35

35-49

50-64

65+

%

%

%

%

%

%

%

Very High

11

11

12

4

14

20

13

High

31

27

34

27

31

34

32

TOTAL High or Very High

42

38

46

31

45

54

45

Average

33

32

35

37

32

27

35

Low

13

15

10

16

11

11

11

Very Low

12

15

9

16

12

8

9

TOTAL Low or Very Low

25

30

19

32

23

19

20

TOTAL

100

100

100

100

100

100

100


From what you know or have heard, how would you rate Victorian Police for honesty and ethical standards? By Melbourne & Country Victoria

Victorians
18+

Melbourne

Country Victoria

%

%

%

Very High

11

11

12

High

31

30

34

TOTAL High or Very High

42

41

46

Average

33

34

30

Low

13

13

13

Very Low

12

12

11

TOTAL Low or Very Low

25

25

24

TOTAL

100

100

100


From what you know or have heard, how would you rate Victorian Police for honesty and ethical standards?
By Party Vote (Federal)

Victorian
Electors

Party Vote

L-NP

ALP

Greens

Ind/Others

Can’t say

%

%

%

%

%

%

Very High

13

15

14

9

7

7

High

32

31

32

32

39

36

TOTAL High or Very High

45

46

46

41

46

43

Average

31

32

30

31

35

27

Low

12

13

13

9

6

16

Very Low

12

9

11

19

13

14

TOTAL Low or Very Low

24

22

24

28

19

30

TOTAL

100

100

100

100

100

100

For comments or more information please contact:
Roy Morgan - Enquiries
Office: +61 (03) 9224 5309
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