Americans are more concerned with relaxing social distancing measures than they are about the country not being opened quick enough, according to a new poll.
The Democracy Fund + UCLA Nationscape Project survey shows a majority of Americans don’t believe it is safe for social distancing requirements to be loosened now. Many think it won’t be safe for at least a few weeks and some say they won’t be ready to venture out for months.
- 71% of surveyed Americans say they are more concerned about the government lifting social distancing restrictions too quickly.
- 29% of surveyed Americans say they are worried restrictions are not being lifted quickly enough.
"There's a tendency for people to focus on people who are very loud right now," Robert Griffin, research director for the Democracy Fund Voter Study Group told USA Today. "But there's ... a real patience that pervades most of American action.”
Poll results indicate that even if restaurants opened right now, Americans are not likely to engage in social activities.
Only 9% of Americans think “it is safe now” for schools and universities to reopen, according to the poll results. Sixteen percent believe it will be safe in several weeks, 42% believe it will be safe in several months, and 22% believe it will be safe in six months or more.
Results show 10% percent of Americans say it’s safe now to allow meetings or gatherings of more than 10 people, like sporting events, concerts, and conferences. In several weeks, that number increases to 21%. In several months, 36% believe it will be safe and then 23% say it won’t be safe until after six months or more.
"You can reopen a lot of things, the bars and restaurants can come back, you can try to reopen schools and send kids back to them, you can try to have larger events occurring ... for more than 10 people, but this really doesn't mean that people are going to necessarily engage in them," Griffin said.
Of those surveyed, only 10% believe it’s safe right now for businesses like theaters, bars and restaurants to reopen. But 26% believe it will be safe in several weeks, 35% believe it will be safe in several months, and 17% believe it will be safe in six or more months.
The survey polled 6,708 Americans between April 23-29. There is a margin of error of +/- 2.1 percentage points.
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