Credit: NS

Majority of Czechs Do Not Believe They Can Help Solve National Issues, Says Poll

Almost four-fifths of Czechs do not believe they can influence the solution of national problems, according to a poll published by the Center for Public Opinion Research (CVVM) yesterday. Respondents also said the most effective tools for changing legislation are strikes and working for a political party. 

According to the respondents, it is citizens themselves, not politicians, who should decide on important local issues.

The poll showed that a vast majority of Czechs (79%) feel that citizens cannot influence the solution of problems at the national level, whereas 18% think the opposite. Distrust is expressed mainly by those who are not satisfied with the current economic or political situation, or do not intend to vote in the next elections. More optimistic are people with higher education or a good standard of living, and respondents who reported higher trust in the government.

A majority (59%) also believe that they cannot achieve their legitimate demands.

People are more optimistic about problems in their home village or town; 53% of respondents think they can influence the solution to these problems. Most Czechs – about three-fifths – also say they can speak out about problems and shortcomings in society.

Compared to the previous survey in 2020, people’s views have not changed significantly.

The respondents were also asked to rate the effectiveness of different ways to influence changes to legislation. The proportion of people considering a given pathway to be effective did not exceed 50% for any of the methods surveyed. Respondents were most confident in strike action or working in a political party (both 49%).

Lawsuits, petitions, demonstrations, and work in civic associations or trade unions were considered effective by around 40% of respondents.

Hunger strikes or work in the church are the least effective in helping to change legislation, trusted by only about a tenth of Czechs. A letter or email to a member of parliament is considered effective by 13% of respondents, while 14% consider violent actions to be effective.

Almost four-fifths of Czechs said that important local issues should be decided by the citizens themselves. Conversely, as regards major laws and international agreements, a majority of people, between 70 and 80%, would leave the decision-making to elected politicians.

On major societal issues, people are more divided. 49% of respondents would let politicians decide, while 46% would like citizens to decide.

The survey was conducted by CVVM on 913 Czech residents from 28 September to 4 December last year.

Majority of Czechs Do Not Believe They Can Help Solve National Issues, Says Poll
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