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Australians support masks and border closures and are willing to be vaccinated for COVID-19

This special Roy Morgan Snap SMS survey was conducted with an Australia-wide cross-section of 1,243 Australians aged 18+ on Thursday January 14 – Friday January 15, 2021.

A special Roy Morgan survey into Australian attitudes towards COVID-19 shows nearly three-quarters of Australians (72%) say mask wearing should be compulsory and over two-thirds, 68%, don’t want State borders to be completely open.

In addition over three-quarters of Australians (77%) say they would be willing to be vaccinated if a new Coronavirus vaccine became publicly available according to the survey conducted with an Australia-wide cross-section of 1,243 Australians aged 18+ on Thursday January 14 – Friday January 15, 2021.


Women, Australians aged 65+ and people in NSW & Victoria most likely to support wearing masks

Support for the compulsory wearing masks is highest amongst women (77%), people aged 65+ (78%) and in a geographic sense it is highest in New South Wales (80%) and Victoria (77%). In contrast only 53% of people in South Australia say mask wearing should be compulsory.

Analysis by Federal voting intention shows Greens supporters (82%) are the most likely to support the compulsory wearing of masks ahead of ALP supporters (74%) and L-NP supporters (71%).

In Victoria mask wearing was wanted by 65% in November, now 77% - so up – although lower than when Roy Morgan measured in Victoria in August (89%) and September (87%) during that State’s second COVID-19 wave.


People in WA most likely to not want State borders completely open

A large majority of 85% of people in Western Australia don’t want State borders to be completely open today – a higher rate than any other State and in line with the tough border policies of the State enforced by Premier Mark McGowan.

There is also strong consensus to not completely open State borders amongst people in Tasmania (79%), South Australia (75%), Queensland (73%) and Victoria (70%).

In only one State, NSW, are opinions almost evenly split on the question with 55% of people in NSW not wanting State borders completely open, but a sizable minority of 45% does want borders completely open.

Nearly three-quarters of women (72%) don’t want State borders to be completely open compared to 65% of men. Perhaps surprisingly, it is younger people aged under 35 who are most opposed to State borders being completely open with 73% against the proposal.

Clear majorities of Greens supporters (80%), ALP supporters (72%) and L-NP supporters (63%) do not want State borders to be completely open today.


Vast majority of Australians say they’ll be vaccinated when a Coronavirus vaccine is available – unchanged on December 2020, but down on earlier in the pandemic

Over three-quarters of Australians (77%) say they will be vaccinated when a Coronavirus vaccine becomes available and this sentiment is high across a broad range of demographics including men (81%), women (73%), across all age groups and in all six States.

Interestingly, supporters of the three main political parties are in agreement on this question with 78% of L-NP supporters, 77% of ALP supporters and 81% of Greens supporters saying they would be willing to be vaccinated when a Coronavirus vaccine becomes available.

Support for being vaccinated is unchanged on November 2020 when 77% of respondents to a special Roy Morgan survey conducted in conjunction with Gallup International agreed they would be vaccinated when a vaccine became available including 41% who strongly agreed and 36% who agreed.

Earlier in the pandemic, back in March/April 2020 when the first lockdown was enforced around Australia, support for being vaccinated for COVID-19 was significantly higher with 87% of Australians in early April agreeing they would be vaccinated including 56% who strongly agreed and 31% who agreed.


Michele Levine CEO Roy Morgan, says Australians have delivered resounding responses to the questions of compulsory mask wearing (in favour), opening all state borders (against) and being willing to be vaccinated when a new coronavirus vaccine becomes publicly available (in favour):

“A clear majority of 72% of Australians support compulsory mask wearing with support highest in the two States with the highest number of COVID-19 cases – NSW (80%) and Victoria (77%). Unsurprisingly support for compulsory wearing of masks is much lower in all other States with only 53% of South Australians, 63% of West Australians and 64% of Queenslanders in support of the measure.

“There is also not such a great partisan divide on the issue as has been seen in other countries such as the United States. Large majorities of L-NP supporters (71%), ALP supporters (74%) and Greens supporters (82%) are all in favour of the compulsory wearing of masks.

“When it comes to the opening of State borders the views of Australians tend to align with their respective State Governments. NSW has had the most open border policy throughout the COVID-19 pandemic and only closed its borders’ once – when daily local cases of COVID-19 ballooned through 100 in early July. In NSW a slim majority of 55% of respondents are against all State borders being completely open today – clearly the lowest against opening the borders of any State.

“At the other end of the spectrum people in the two States with the most restrictive border policies are most in favour of keeping State borders closed. A large majority of 85% of West Australians and 79% of Tasmanians don’t want State borders completely open today. These results indicate voters tend to align their views with the policies of their respective State Governments when these policies are demonstrated to be an effective response to the threat posed by COVID-19.

“The COVID-19 vaccine is set to be rolled out across Australia starting from next month and the good news is a clear majority of 77% of Australians say they will be vaccinated when the vaccine becomes publicly available – and this support is strong across all sections of the community including both genders, people of all ages, supporters of different political parties and in every State and Territory.”  

Australians surveyed were each asked the following questions to determine their attitudes towards wearing masks, the opening/closure of State borders and whether they would take a COVID-19 vaccine:

●       Question 1: Should wearing masks be compulsory or not? Yes 72% cf. No 28%.

●       Question 2: Do you believe State borders within Australia should be completely open today?Yes 32% cf. No 68%.

●       Question 3: “If a new Coronavirus vaccine became publicly available, would you be willing to be vaccinated?” Yes 77% cf. No 23%.

This special Roy Morgan Snap SMS survey was conducted with an Australia-wide cross-section of 1,243 Australians aged 18+ on Thursday January 14 – Friday January 15, 2021.

For further comment or more information contact:
Michele Levine 0411 129 093 or Gary Morgan 0411 129 094 or email
askroymorgan@roymorgan.com.


Question 1:

Should wearing masks be compulsory or not?
By Gender & Age

Australians
18+

Gender

Age

Men

Women

Under 35

35-49

50-64

65+

%

%

%

%

%

%

%

Yes

72

67

77

72

67

70

78

No

28

33

23

28

33

30

22

TOTAL

100

100

100

100

100

100

100


Should wearing masks be compulsory or not?
By States & City/Country

Areas

States

Australians
18+

Capital
Cities

Country
Regions

NSW

VIC

QLD

WA

SA

TAS#

%

%

%

%

%

%

%

%

%

Yes

72

77

62

80

77

64

63

53

64

No

28

23

38

20

23

36

37

47

36

TOTAL

100

100

100

100

100

100

100

100

100

#Sample sizes with fewer than 50 respondents should be treated with caution.


Should wearing masks be compulsory or not?
By Party Vote (Federal)

Electors

Party Vote

L-NP

ALP

Greens

Ind/Others

Can’t say

%

%

%

%

%

%

Yes

72

71

74

82

62

67

No

28

29

26

18

38

33

TOTAL

100

100

100

100

100

100


Should wearing masks be compulsory or not? – asked of Victorians during Victoria’s second lockdown (August 2020 & September 2020) and just after the lockdown ended (November 2020).

Victorians 18+

Aug 25-26,
2020

Sep 1-2,
2020

Nov 9-10,
2020

%

%

%

Yes

89

87

65

No

11

13

35

TOTAL

100

100

100


Question 2:

Do you believe State borders within Australia should be completely open today?
By Gender & Age

Australians
18+

Gender

Age

Men

Women

Under 35

35-49

50-64

65+

%

%

%

%

%

%

%

Yes

32

35

28

27

34

32

36

No

68

65

72

73

66

68

64

TOTAL

100

100

100

100

100

100

100


Do you believe State borders within Australia should be completely open today?
By States & City/Country

Areas

States

Australians
18+

Capital
Cities

Country
Regions

NSW

VIC

QLD

WA

SA

TAS#

%

%

%

%

%

%

%

%

%

Yes

32

31

32

45

30

27

15

25

21

No

68

69

68

55

70

73

85

75

79

TOTAL

100

100

100

100

100

100

100

100

100

#Sample sizes with fewer than 50 respondents should be treated with caution.


Do you believe State borders within Australia should be completely open today?
By Party Vote (Federal)

Electors

Party Vote

L-NP

ALP

Greens

Ind/Others

Can’t say

%

%

%

%

%

%

Yes

32

37

28

20

40

33

No

68

63

72

80

60

67

TOTAL

100

100

100

100

100

100


Question 3:

If a new Coronavirus vaccine became publicly available, would you be willing to be vaccinated?
By Gender & Age

Australians
18+

Gender

Age

Men

Women

Under 35

35-49

50-64

65+

%

%

%

%

%

%

%

Yes

77

81

73

77

72

79

80

No

23

19

27

23

28

21

19

TOTAL

100

100

100

100

100

100

100


If a new Coronavirus vaccine became publicly available, would you be willing to be vaccinated?
By States & City/Country

Areas

States

Australians
18+

Capital
Cities

Country
Regions

NSW

VIC

QLD

WA

SA

TAS#

%

%

%

%

%

%

%

%

%

Yes

77

79

72

79

80

72

74

71

76

No

23

21

28

21

20

28

26

29

24

TOTAL

100

100

100

100

100

100

100

100

100

#Sample sizes with fewer than 50 respondents should be treated with caution.


If a new Coronavirus vaccine became publicly available, would you be willing to be vaccinated? By Party Vote (Federal)

Electors

Party Vote

L-NP

ALP

Greens

Ind/Others

Can’t say

%

%

%

%

%

%

Yes

77

78

77

81

73

68

No

23

22

23

19

27

32

TOTAL

100

100

100

100

100

100


 

This question was previously asked as part of an international survey in conjunction with Gallup International using a five point scale in March 2020, April 2020 and again in November 2020: Strongly Agree, Agree, Disagree, Strongly Disagree, Don’t know.

Question 5: If a new Coronavirus (COVID-19) vaccine became publicly available, I would be willing to be vaccinated

Australians 18+

Mar 28-29,
2020

Apr 4-5,
2020

Nov 12-17,

2020

%

%

%

TOTAL Agree

86

87

77

Strongly agree

56

56

41

Agree

30

31

36

Disagree

4

3

6

Strongly disagree

3

4

6

TOTAL Disagree

7

7

12

Don’t know

7

6

11

TOTAL

100

100

100

For more details on this survey please view the release here: https://www.roymorgan.com/findings/8604-gallup-international-survey-covid-19-opinion-questions-november-2020-202012211153


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