Abstracts: May 17th, 2010

This report from Communities and Local Government present findings from a survey of attitudes across policy areas.

The survey found variations in levels of trust across different areas compared to 2005. Trust in parliament was down from 37 to 34 per cent. Trust was highest amongst 16 to 24 year olds, 47 per cent, with all other groups showing lower levels of trust in parliament ranging of between 27 and 40 per cent.

Trust in councils was up to 61 per cent from 57 per cent in 2005. 69 per cent of 16 to 24 year olds trusted the local council ‘a lot’ or a ‘fair amount’. This is higher than that observed amongst people aged 35 to 49.

Trust in the police increased from 79 per cent in 2005 to 82 per cent in 2009. Trust in the police was higher amongst those aged 35 and over, ranging between 82 and 85 per cent, compared with 16 to 24 year olds.

There was little variation in other areas. 38 per cent of people said that they had engaged in civic participation. Ability to influence is on a plateau with only 39 per cent of people saying that they felt able to influence decisions affecting their local area and this falls to 22 per cent who felt able to influence decisions affecting Britain as a whole. People were also asked how they would go about influencing decisions in their area. The most common responses were contacting the council or local council official, favoured by 48 per cent. 45 per cent would contact their councillor, and 44 per cent would sign a petition.

Empowered communities is available from CLG http://www.communities.gov.uk/documents/statistics/pdf/1547220.pdf