BREAKING: Canada at populism, trust crisis tipping point

TORONTO, Feb. 14, 2017 /CNW/ - The 2017 Edelman Trust Barometer confirms that Canada can no longer count itself immune from the global trend of populism and sinking institutional trust. For the first time since Edelman started tracking the general population, Canada finds itself among countries who distrust their institutions. Trust in business, media and government is in trouble.

Edelman's international study on public perception of institutions and their leaders also exposes a growing divide between the informed public (educated, upper-quartile income earners) and the rest of Canada. A 15-point gap exists between institutional trust among informed public and the mass population. This gap is nearly twice what it was last year. It is the biggest recorded gap noted between these two groups and is approaching the gaps in countries like the U.S., U.K. and France (21, 19 and 18 respectively).

"Canada is not immune from the impact of the global trust crisis. In fact, we're seeing similar trend lines as our neighbors in the United States," says Lisa Kimmel, President and CEO, Edelman Canada. "Canadians are telling us they are worried about their futures and don't trust our institutions to fix their concerns."

Importantly, the 2017 Edelman Trust Barometer reveals emerging concern and fears among Canadians in key areas that commonly underpin populist outcomes. One in two people surveyed agree with the statement that the influx of people from other countries is damaging Canada's economy and national culture. 80% of people think the elites who run institutions are out of touch with regular people. And, 61% of people do not have confidence that Canada's current leaders will be able to successfully solve Canada's challenges. 48% also agreed that globalization is taking us in the wrong direction.

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