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Half of Ukrainians think most of spring’s lockdown measures were reasonable [EN/UK]

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UNDP supported a survey on how Ukrainians perceived the lockdown measures introduced by the Government in Ukraine in spring 2020 because of the COVID-19 pandemic

Kyiv, 27 November 2020 – The ZMINA Human Rights Centre, with analytical support from the Ilko Kucheriv Democratic Initiatives Foundation and supported by UNDP Ukraine, has conducted a sociological survey to identify Ukrainians’ attitude to the lockdown measures introduced by the government in spring 2020.

The national survey shows that most respondents supported the requirement for a 14-day period of self-isolation for people arriving from abroad or from non-government controlled territories (72 percent). Most of those polled also supported restrictions on public cultural, entertainment, and sports events for more than 10 people (63 percent), and the restriction on religious gatherings at places of worship (60 percent).

Svitlana Kolyshko, Human Rights Team Lead and UNDP Ukraine Project Manager of the “Human Rights for Ukraine” project, stressed that sociological surveys are vitally important for identifying strong and weak spots of national policies and state decisions.

“Ukraine is facing the necessity to introduce additional lockdown measures,” Kolyshko said. “To adopt well-balanced and human rights-based decisions, it is necessary to understand which human rights may be violated, which restrictions are inefficient, and on the contrary which decisions are reasonable and perceived by people as safety measures.”

Andriy Sukharyna, the political analyst of the Ilko Kucheriv Democratic Initiatives Foundation, said respondents often supported measures that mainly do not relate to their everyday life, or those for which the government succeeded in communicating and explaining the potential risks for the mass spread of the disease.

“That is why, to reduce social tension and for the better perception of measures aimed at tackling the pandemic, the government needs to regularly and thoroughly explain the reasons why such measures were adopted,” Sukharyna said.

Most of the respondents supported the restriction for transportation between the countries, and 57 percent of those polled supported self-isolation for people over 60 years old. Restrictions on public catering were supported by 56 percent of respondents.

Along with this, some measures were perceived by Ukrainians as unreasonable. Among them, the restriction on public transportation within settlements, which was supported by only 27 percent, compared to 68 percent against. The restriction on public transportation between settlements was supported by 28 percent, compared to 68 percent against. Also, the requirement to carry ID documents outside the home was supported by only 32 percent. The restriction on going to parks, recreation areas, sports/playgrounds was supported by 36 percent of respondents, compared to 59 percent against.

Nearly all lockdown restrictions were more supported by youngsters (18 – 29 years) compared to people aged 30 – 39 years. Also, women supported lockdown measures more than men.

On the eve of the new wave of the pandemic this winter, experts from the ZMINA Human Rights Centre stress that all the restrictions limiting people’s presence in public spaces should be non-discriminatory, the same for everyone, and be based on the recommendations of the World Health Organization.

Background information:

The survey was conducted on 12-16 September 2020 using CATI methodology (computer-assisted telephone interviews), based on a random sampling of mobile phone numbers. The sampling is representative of the population of Ukraine aged 18+. The survey was conducted in all oblasts of Ukraine, apart from the non-government-controlled areas of Donetsk and Luhansk oblasts, and the Autonomous Republic of Crimea. During the survey, 2001 questionnaires were filed in. The statistical deviation of sample (with a probability of 0.95 and taking into account the design effect of 1.1) does not exceed: 2.4 percent for indicators close to 50 percent, 2.1 percent for indicators close to 25 percent, and 1.5 percent for indicators close to 10 percent.

The survey was carried out by the ZIMA Human Rights Centre, with analytical support from the Ilko Kucheriv Democratic Initiatives Foundation and support from the Human Rights for Ukraine project, which is implemented by UNDP Ukraine and financed by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Denmark.

The opinions, attitudes, and assessments contained in the research do not necessarily reflect those of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Denmark, the United Nations Development Programme, or other UN Agencies.

Media inquiries:

Yuliia Samus, UNDP Communications Team Leader,