A syringe of the COVID-19 vaccine waits to be administered in Toronto on Monday, Dec. 14, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Frank Gunn

Most Canadians optimistic about 2021 in light of COVID-19 vaccines: online poll

The majority of Canadians report feeling optimistic about the new year in light of the COVID-19 vaccines, according to a new online survey.

A report commissioned by the Association for Canadian Studies and conducted by Leger said 70 per cent of those polled said they were somewhat optimistic about 2021, while 15 per cent reported feeling very optimistic.

Another 10 per cent said news of the vaccines left them feeling somewhat pessimistic about the new year, and five per cent said they felt very pessimistic.

Quebecers were slightly more positive overall, with 87 per cent reporting some level of optimism, compared with 84 per cent in the rest of Canada.

Those who described themselves as very optimistic were the most likely to say they will get immunized once a shot is publicly available.

More than 88 per cent of them said they would get the vaccine, compared with roughly 72 per cent of the somewhat optimistic respondents, 25 per cent of the somewhat pessimistic and just over six per cent of the very pessimistic.

The survey polled 1,528 Canadian adults between Dec. 11 and 13. According to the polling industry’s generally accepted standards, online surveys cannot be assigned a margin of error because they do not randomly sample the population.

Meanwhile, Nunavut reported its first two deaths related to the novel coronavirus on Sunday as case counts remained high in several provinces, including Ontario and Quebec, which account for the bulk of the country’s infections.

A joint statement issued by Nunavut’s premier, health minister and chief public health officer said a resident of Arviat and one from Rankin Inlet died Saturday.

The territory had no cases of COVID-19 until November, and has since recorded 259.

Earlier Sunday, Ontario marked a sixth consecutive day with more than 2,000 new cases, reporting 2,316. The province also saw 25 new deaths related to the virus.

The provincial government is expected to announce additional health measures Monday.

Quebec reported 2,146 new cases of COVID-19 on Sunday and 21 additional deaths linked to the novel coronavirus.

Canada surpassed 500,000 confirmed cases of COVID-19 this weekend as vaccine rollout reached its final province.

The latest 100,000 cases were recorded across the country over just 15 days — the shortest growth period since the pandemic was declared in March.

It took six months for Canada to register its first 100,000 cases of the virus, another four to reach 200,000, less than a month to hit 300,000 and 18 days to hit 400,000.

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