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Monday, October 18, 2021

Features of democracy according to the youngest voters. CBOS survey

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More than half of young citizens do not agree with the statements that “the state provides decent living conditions for the poorest”, “children from all families have equal opportunities for education”, and “the Sejm represents the will of voters” – informs the Public Opinion Research Center (CBOS) on the basis of research on the essential features of democracy according to young citizens.

In the survey by the Public Opinion Research Center (CBOS), young respondents aged 18 to 24 were asked how the respondents assess the functioning of the above-mentioned features of democracy in Poland. CBOS emphasizes that “in the assessment of the implementation in Poland of most aspects of democracy that we asked about, young respondents are more critical than adults in general”. The communiqué indicates that young respondents less often than the general public agree with the assessments that in Poland there is a selection of the best people to govern the country (10% of young people and 33% of all adults agree, 80% and 58% disagree, respectively), that the government cares about the well-being of citizens (29% of young people and 48% of all adults agree, 66% and 44% of all adults disagree, respectively) that the government tries not to interfere in citizens’ lives (22% of young people and 35% of adults agree). of adults, 70% and 51% disagree, respectively)

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Young people are less likely to believe that there is freedom of speech and organization in Poland (38% of young people and 54% of all adults agree, 53% and 39% of all adults disagree, respectively), that everyone in Poland is equal before the law (21 agreed). % of young people and 38% of all adults disagree, 76% and 57%, respectively).

According to young people, the state does not provide equal opportunities for education, and the Sejm does not represent the will of voters

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CBOS also draws attention to opinions such as “the state ensures decent living conditions for the poorest”, with which 33 percent agree. young and 48 percent. total adults and 56 and 41 percent disagree, respectively.

According to young people, the state does not provide equal opportunities for education and does not represent the will of votersForum

31 percent of young people and 48 percent of all adults disagree with the opinion that “children of all families have equal opportunities in education”, 64 percent and 46 percent disagree, respectively.

With the statement that “the state transfers the broadest possible powers to local governments and social organizations” – 29 percent agree. young and 38 percent. of adults, 52 and 41 percent, respectively, disagree – in turn with the opinion that “important state decisions are consulted with the society” – 14 percent of young people and 26 percent of young people agree. of adults, 82 percent and 64 percent disagree, respectively.

36 percent of young people and 42 percent of young people agree with the opinion that “the Seym represents the will of the voters”. of adults, 55 and 46 percent, respectively, do not agree.

Young people, just like adults, show the essential features and principles of democracy

When asked about the features and principles of democracy which they consider important – the most frequently indicated both among young adults and the general public are: free and fair elections (94% of young people, 96% of all adults), protection of personal freedom of citizens (92% of young adults, 94% of the total), equality before the law (91% of young people, 95% of the total), as well as providing children from all families with equal opportunities for education (91% of young people, 95% of the total) and the government’s care for the well-being of citizens (91 % of young people, 92% of the total). “Young adults are slightly less likely than the general public to assign tasks in the field of social policy to a democratic state: reducing the inequality of living conditions, providing decent conditions to the poorest, financing health, science and culture by the state, and the state’s overall responsibility for economic life” – reads the CBOS release. Providing decent conditions to the poorest is an essential feature of democracy for 84% of people. young and 87 percent. of the total, and insignificant for 11 percent. young and 8 percent. general state financing of health, science and culture – this feature is important for 89 percent. young people and 92 percent of the total, and unimportant for 7 percent. young and 5 percent. general general responsibility of the state for economic life – this is an important feature for 83 percent. young and 88 percent. total, and invalid for 9 percent. young and 5 percent. in general.

“Moreover, for adults under 25 years of age, democracy is less often associated with collectivism – the subordination of minorities to the will of the majority and the limitation of individual rights in order to achieve social goals” – reads the release. “Subjugating the minority to the will of the majority” was indicated as an essential feature of democracy by 54 percent of the respondents. young and 59 percent. of the total number of respondents, and “limiting the rights of an individual to achieve collective goals” is important for 49 percent. young and 52 percent. total, and not important for 38 percent. young and 28 percent. all respondents.

CBOS also notes that, to a lesser extent than the rest of the respondents, young people consider such rules as appropriate for a democratic state: control of the government’s actions by independent courts (including the Constitutional Tribunal) – this feature is important for 79% of respondents. young and 86 percent. total, invalid for 12 percent. young and 5 percent. general selecting the best people to run the country – important for 88 percent young and 93 percent. total, not important for 6 percent. young and 3 percent. general representation of voters’ will by parliament – important for 83 percent young and 88 percent. total, not important for 10 percent. young and 3 percent. all adults. Other features that the CBOS points to the differences in assessment are the rule of law (important for 83% of young people and 86% of the total, not important for 8% and 4%, respectively), 80% of young people and 83% of the total, no matter for 11 and 7%, respectively), protection of minority rights (important for 84% of young people and 86% of the total, not of importance for 11 and 6%, respectively) and limitation of state interference in life of citizens (important for 77% of young people and 82% of the total, not important for 13 and 7% respectively). “The comparison of the declarations of respondents under 25 and adults in general shows that democracy, in the understanding of the former, is slightly more individualistic, less oriented towards the political community, and – which is to some extent related to this – the role of the social policy of the state is slightly less pronounced” – summarizes the message.

The CBOS survey was conducted on 8-18 April on a representative sample of 1,000 people. 131 people. The questionnaires were carried out by means of direct interview (CAPI, 47.3% of all interviews), telephone interview (CATI, 88.5% of interviews) and by means of an internet survey (CAWI, 14.2% of interviews).

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