Kiwis have really come together in this strange time

15 July 2021

If we had to pick one word to describe the past 18 months, it would be ‘unprecedented’. Since March 2020, the world has been tested in ways we could never have imagined, let alone planned for.

It has shifted our perspectives on how we live our lives and socialise, our jobs, our finances, and our goals. But even the greyest of clouds have a silver lining somewhere. For us here in New Zealand, that silver lining has been our ability to come together as one.

Recent research* has just confirmed that, when asked to adopt preventative behaviours and measures, an ‘overwhelming majority’ of New Zealanders followed the rules. It may not have been easy or pleasant at times – but we did it.

So here are some interesting stats, showing how our community spirit brought New Zealand together in these unusual times.

Support for preventative behaviours and measures

According to research from Massey University, three in four Kiwis have used the contact-tracing app to record their movements. Also, an ‘overwhelming majority’ of Kiwis say they support regional (94 per cent) or national (81 per cent) lockdowns in case of a new outbreak. And, about 68 per cent of Kiwis or seven in ten people reported wearing a mask in public to protect themselves and others.  

Interestingly, more Kiwis are adopting these preventative behaviours in 2021 than reported in July 2020.

COVID-19 Protective Behaviours

Source: Dr. Jagadish Thaker

The value of effective communication

According to senior lecturer Dr. Jagadish Thaker, effective communication from official sources also contributed to the success of Covid-19 measures. And the value of simple and clear communication will continue to matter during the vaccination campaign.

Thaker said that Kiwis’ attitudes to vaccination have evolved as well, with fewer reporting hesitancy. A previous survey from 2020 found that almost 25 per cent of the public were hesitant to take the vaccine, but the latest survey has found that 12 per cent are “unsure” and 10 per cent would not take the vaccine.


Aotearoa Public Responses to COVID-19: March 2021


* Research methodology: The national survey was conducted in February and March 2021, with nearly 1,100 respondents.


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