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Canadians losing confidence in government, media and business: study

(iStock photo)

CALGARY (NEWS 1130) – Accusations of fake news and alternative facts are alive and well in Canada.

According to a new study, the number of Canadians who distrust major institutions like government, media and business has reached a new high at 51 per cent.

Many of us also refuse to leave our echo chambers.

Edelman Canada’s 2017 Trust Barometer found 55 per cent of Canadians admit they don’t listen to people or organizations they disagree with.

“And of course, if they’re not open to that, distrust is going to persist,” President and CEO Lisa Kimmel said.

Sixty-three per cent of those surveyed blame the government for their problems, and when it comes to consuming news, the majority (60 per cent) are more likely to believe a search engine over a human editor.

Kimmel said the gap in trust between those who are well-educated with higher incomes and everyone else is also bigger than it’s ever been.

“There is a, I think, a sentiment in Canada that we are not in a similar situation as the UK and the US, and what these results demonstrate is we’re actually at a tipping point,” she said, adding there’s no question the American political climate impacted the results.

“There is growing sentiment that our institutions are out of touch with real people and [Canadians] actually lack confidence in their leadership.”

While trust in CEOs is at an all-time low (25 per cent), Canadian businesses are still the most trusted in the world besides those in Sweden.

“And that’s why it’s contingent upon business leaders to play a much more engaged and active role in solving some of the challenges that the country faces,” Kimmel said.