• Meaningful Vote Poll

    Following on from Theresa May’s heavy defeat in the House of Commons on Tuesday evening, ICM asked the British public which steps the Prime Minister should now take. We presented a range of possible options, including a second election, referendum, resignation, persisting with her deal, renegotiating a softer/harder deal, getting an extension to article 50 and pursuing a hard Brexit.

     

    While there is no majority in favour of any single option, Brits are most likely to think that May should pursue a ‘no deal’ Brexit (28%). Demonstrating the divide in public opinion, the next most popular option, supported by just under 1 in 4 (24%) of the public, is to start the process of holding a second referendum.

     

    It’s also illuminating to see what the general public don’t think should happen next – in the public’s eyes May’s deal is dead, with only 8% thinking she should persist on getting it through parliament. Only a small number more think she should call a general election (11%). And one of the most likely options in the eyes of many commentators – trying to renegotiate a ‘softer’ Brexit deal – only gets the support of 1 in 8 (13%) of the population.

     

    Given the no-confidence vote on Wednesday and the debate on what this means for Labour’s position on a second Referendum, it’s also worth noting that on this question 2017 Labour voters are much more likely to think May should hold a second referendum (34%) than call a snap general election (22%).

     

    And if a general election was called on the subject of Brexit, our poll would be concerning reading for the Labour leadership. A clear majority (56%) of the British public disagree with the statement that Jeremy Corbyn would make a better job of Brexit than Theresa May, with almost half of the population (45%) disagreeing strongly. And, given the deadlock over the Brexit deal, support for a general election is lower than for a second referendum (29% vs 36%). Indeed, marginally more 2017 Labour voters agree that a second referendum is a good idea (50%) compared to a second referendum (47%).

     

    This poll was featured in The Guardian – read the article here.

     

    We also asked Voting Intention, with the results as below – Labour are up to 40%, one percentage point ahead of the Conservatives on 39%.

     

    Conservative

    39%

    Labour

    40%

    LibDem

    9%

    SNP

    3%

    PC

    *%

    Green

    3%

    UKIP

    5%

    Other

    1%

     

    ICM Unlimited interviewed a representative online sample of 2,046 adults aged 18+, between 16th – 18th January 2019. Interviews were conducted across the country and the results have been weighted to the profile of all adults. ICM is a member of the British Polling Council and abides by its rules.

     

  • Family Action – Family Monsters

    ICM were commissioned to carry out a poll on family pressures on behalf of Family Action.

    ICM Unlimited interviewed two representative samples of 2,050 (wave 1) and 2,044 (wave 2) people aged 18+ living in Great Britain online between 11th – 13th May (wave 1) and 25th – 27th July 2018 (wave 2). Interviews were conducted online, and the results have been weighted to the profile of all adults.

    This research was covered on www.thedrum.com and other media outlets.

     

    Key findings from the study include:

    3 in 4 (75%) families say that there is at least one common pressure for them and their close family. A lack of money, followed by cost of living, is the top ‘main pressure’ cited, with physical health issues/disability following this. Other top pressures relate to health and wellness overall, including mental health and care of ageing relatives, spending quality time together, family relationships and work/education pressures.

    The preferred option to address family pressures is to talk about it with someone. However, 4 in 10 (42% of those who have close family pressures) don’t do anything about it. Some feel like they don’t need to (19%), but there are barriers in place for others including:

    • Not being sure who can help (14%)
    • Thinking they should be able to overcome them as a family without external support (13%)
    • Their family living far away (13%)
    • Thinking other people need support than them (12%)
    • A lack of confidence (11%)
    • Fear of being judged (9%)
    • Not being ready to talk about it (7%)
    • A lack of services near them (6%)
    • Not thinking their family pressures will be taken seriously (6%)

    Download tables here

  • Debt Hacker Poll

    ICM were commissioned to carry out a poll on attitudes to debt and payday lending on behalf of Debt Hacker.

    ICM Unlimited interviewed a representative sample of 2,002 adults across Great Britain aged 18+, between 3rd – 8th October 2018. Interviews were conducted online and the results have been weighted to the profile of all adults.

    This research was covered in The Big Issue and other media outlets.

    Download tables here

     

  • The Guardian – Bias in Britain BAME Polling

     

    This landmark ICM Unlimited poll on behalf of The Guardian shows the extent of the everyday negative experiences and potential bias faced by BAME people in Britain today.

     

    ICM interviewed a representative sample of 1,000 Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic people living in Britain. This is a sample size and robustness rarely seen among this audience in publicly available polling and allows for a detailed analysis of the experiences and views of Britain’s BAME population.

     

    The results are stark. A majority (57%) of BAME people agree they have to work harder to succeed in Britain because of their ethnicity. Ultimately, more than 2 in 3 (69%) BAME people think that Britain today has a problem with racism.

     

    In addition to this representative sample of BAME people, we also sourced a ‘comparison sample’ of over 1,700 White people in Britain, drawn from a nationally representative sample of Great Britain. This approach allowed us to ask both White and BAME people in Britain about certain experiences and take a look at the differences between the two groups.

     

    For all six experiences we asked of both the BAME and the White sample, BAME people report being more likely to experience them than White people overall. For each and every experience, BAME people were not only more likely to have experienced this, but were also more likely to report having experienced this more recently compared to White people. This suggests that BAME people are much more likely to face the negative experiences we tested, and are also more likely to have these negative experiences with a greater frequency than the White population overall.

     

    More than 2 in 5 (43%) of BAME people in Britain say they have been overlooked in a job application process or for promotion at work in a manner that felt unfair in the last five years. This is more than double the proportion of White people in Britain who said the same (less than 1 in 5, 18%).

     

    A quarter (25%) of BAME people in Britain report having been refused entrance or asked to leave a restaurant, bar or club for no good reason in the past 5 years. This is almost three times the proportion of White people who have experienced the same, at less than 1 in 10 (9%).

     

    More than 2 in 3 BAME people in Britain (69%) say that a stranger has been abusive or rude to them in public, significantly more than the half (52%) of the White population who say the same thing.

     

    Almost half of BAME people in Britain (47%) say they have been treated like a potential shoplifter in a shop when they hadn’t done anything wrong – more than double the 22% of White people in Britain who say the same. And if some readers might think this is due to events of long ago – legacy racist attitudes which no longer exist – these results pose a real challenge to such views. 15% (around 1 in 7) of BAME people in Britain say they have been treated like a potential shoplifter in the past month alone. The equivalent figure for White people in Britain is only 4% (around 1 in 25).

     

     

    Other key findings from this study include:

    • Two-thirds (66%) of BAME people in Britain have experienced someone assuming they aren’t British on the basis of their ethnicity. 1 in 5 (21%) have had someone assume they aren’t British on the basis of their ethnicity within the last month alone.
    • A similar proportion (20%) have experienced someone using racist language in their presence, although not directed at them, in the last month.
    • Half (50%) of BAME people in Britain agree that sometimes people don’t realise that they treat them differently because of their ethnicity,
    • BAME Muslims are more likely to have recent negative experiences which they perceive were in some way because of their religion of belief, compared to BAME people of other religions and beliefs.
    • There are key differences between people of different ethnicities. For example, 45% of Black respondents say they have been unfairly treated like a shoplifter, and the last time they were treated like this it was because of their ethnicity. The equivalent figure falls to 35% among people of mixed ethnicity and more than halves again to 15% among people of Asian ethnicity.
    • 2 in 3 Black people (67%) agree they have to work harder to succeed in Britain because of their ethnicity, significantly more than people of Asian (56%), Other (52%) and Mixed (48%) ethnicities.
    • There are also important difference by gender. BAME men are more likely to have been stopped by the police (46%) or to have been refused entrance or asked to leave a restaurant, club or bar (39% without a good reason compared to BAME women (29% and 30% respectively). Women are more likely to have been through a greater number of these distinct experiences, and are also twice as likely as BAME men to have most recently experienced a stranger being abusive or rude to them in public in a way which was attributable to their gender (13% vs. 6%).
    • Almost 4 in 10 (38%) of BAME people have felt the need to alter their appearance because of their ethnicity. BAME women are more likely to have felt this (42%) compared to BAME men (35%)
    • 3 in 5 BAME people (60%) say someone has confused them with another person of the same ethnicity. This rises to more than 3 in 4 Black people (77%)
    • While there were only 47 people identifying as Lesbian, Gay or Bisexual in our sample of BAME people, these people are consistently more likely to have had negative experiences than straight respondents.

     

     

    Alex Turk, Research Manager at ICM Unlimited, comments on the findings.

     

    ‘Our findings suggest that the negative experiences asked about, some of which may never have been experienced by many White people in Britain, are all-too-often a frequent occurrence among BAME people living in Britain today. This poll suggests that, at least in terms of the experiences we tested, there is a big difference in the lived-experiences of BAME and White people in Britain today.’

     

    ‘The magnitude of some of these differences may come as a shock to some readers – our poll suggests that BAME people may be several times more likely to be at the receiving end of negative experiences compared to their White friends, colleagues and neighbours.’

     

    ‘The strong sample size of 1,000, designed to be representative of the BAME population in Britain, allows for a detailed analysis not usually possible on publicly available polling. It allows us to look into the differing experiences and views of subgroups in the BAME and White population. This ultimately helps to disaggregate ‘BAME’ as a broad category – we can look at the differing experiences of Britain’s BAME population by more detailed ethnicity breakdowns, religious belief, age, gender, region, and sexual orientation.’

     

    ‘We can also see that young people – whether White or BAME – are more likely to say they’ve had the negative experiences we’ve asked about compared to older people. But while this generational divide exists across all ethnicities, it is still clear that BAME people are more likely to have these negative experiences compared to their White contemporaries.’

     

    ‘One of the few possible positive findings is that a majority (57%) of BAME people in Britain say they either have never experienced someone directing racist language at them or, if they have experienced this, it was more than five years ago. This finding could be interpreted as the result of a positive shift in attitudes over the years – where previously it may have been more socially acceptable to direct racist language at BAME people, it is no longer so.’

     

    ‘But there are two immediate points that this research raises which can be used in response to this argument. Firstly, it’s still the case that around 1 in 8 (12%) of BAME people have had racist language directed at them in the past month, rising to 1 in 5 (21%) within the past six months, 3 in 10 (29%) within the last year and over 2 in 5 (43%) within the last five years. For many, these figures will still be unacceptably high’

     

    ‘Secondly, we have to consider more broadly what this research contributes. Even if we view this possible long-term decline in direct racist language as a positive development, the rest of this research shows that there remains a vast range of negative experiences that BAME people are much more likely to be at the receiving end of compared to White people. These negative experiences might be seen by some as less overt and obvious examples of racist, ethnically biased or structurally unequal outcomes. Nevertheless this research strongly suggests that, in the areas we have tested, BAME people are much more likely to have negative experiences than White people in Britain today.’

     

    ‘Ultimately 2 in 3 BAME people agree the Britain has a problem with racism. It’s a stark result and, in light of the broader findings in this research, we fully expect these findings to contribute to the important debate on ethnicity in Britain today.’

     

    Read the main Guardian write up, The Guardian’s data visualisations of the polling results, and Afua Hirsch’s comment article on why this study matters.

     

    Download tables here

     

  • Withdrawal Agreement Polling

     

    Theresa May’s deal may be very few people’s first choice – but it could yet emerge as the public’s preferred option.

     

    Last week Theresa May presented the choice facing MPs and the country as being between three options: her deal, no deal, and no Brexit.

     

    A brand new poll from ICM has tested the public’s view on this choice – and has shown that, when offered all three options, Theresa May’s deal comes in last place with 22% of the public preference. While there’s no clear majority in favour of any single option, a comparatively greater proportion would prefer no deal (29%) or no Brexit (36%).

     

    But take the option of ‘no Brexit’ off the table, and those that previously preferred this option now break dramatically in favour of Theresa May’s deal. So much so that May’s deal could become the UK public’s preferred option if it’s seen as the only alternative to a no deal Brexit.

     

    This has important implications for any future parliamentary vote and especially if there were to be a second referendum. While it may seem at the moment like there are very few fans of the withdrawal agreement as it currently stands, things may change if the available options are seen to narrow. It may well end up as the public’s least favourite option, but at the same time the only option a majority can agree on as the least bad on offer. Maybe, just maybe, this will eventually be seen as a successful compromise after all?

     

    But the furore may have already taken its toll on the Prime Minister before she gets the chance to force a choice in favour of her deal – almost half (49%) of the British public expect her to be replaced as Tory leader by 29th March, when the UK is currently due to leave the EU.

     

    Key findings:

    • Almost half (49%) of Brits think Theresa May will be replaced as Conservative leader before the end of March. Excluding those who day they don’t know, this rises to a clear majority of those expressing a view thinking Theresa May will be replaced by the end of March (61%)
    • Only 1 in 4 (24%) think there will be a second referendum (or ‘People’s Vote’) announced in this time, with 1 in 3 thinking (34%) thinking a general election will be announced.
    • When given a choice between Theresa May’s deal, no deal or no Brexit, Theresa May’s deal is the least favoured of the three options – Only 22% of Brits pick it as their preferred choice compared to 36% for no Brexit and 29% for no deal. 13% say they don’t know.
    • However if we take the option of no Brexit off the table and ask its supporters which of the two remaining options they prefer, more than twice as many choose Theresa May’s deal (48%) over no deal (21%). 31% say they don’t know.
      • This tips the balance such that, in a hypothetical direct choice between Theresa May’s deal and no deal, it’s possible that May’s deal could just edge ahead. Excluding those who said they don’t know, 51% would prefer May’s deal to 49% who would prefer no deal.
      • But crucially it’s those who voted for the UK to Remain in 2016 which swing this choice in favour of May. Only 3 in 10 Leavers (30%) say they would choose May’s deal over no deal, with a majority of leavers (57%) preferring no deal.

     

    This poll was featured in the Sun on Sunday – read the article here

     

    ICM Unlimited interviewed a representative online sample of 2,011 adults aged 18+, between 16th – 18th November 2018. Interviews were conducted across the country and the results have been weighted to the profile of all adults. ICM is a member of the British Polling Council and abides by its rules.

     

    Download tables here

     

  • Labour Leave Poll for Represent Us

    Labour Leave Poll for Represent Us

    The findings have been written up by Represent Us here.

    These tables present the findings from research into the voting intentions of 1,535 residents in 54 constituencies which Labour won in the 2017 General Election and which voted Leave in the 2016 EU Referendum. The sample was split into two sub-samples: 27 constituencies where the Leave vote share was 50-59.9% (n=785) and 27 constituencies where the Leave vote share was 60+% (n=750). The research covered voting intentions under different hypothetical scenarios imagining that the parliamentary vote on the final Brexit deal had been held.

    Note: fieldwork took place between 2 – 13 November (i.e. prior to the deal being made public)

    The findings reveal that the best scenario electorally for Labour is when the idea of a People’s Vote is introduced. By far the best outcome is produced by Labour (including the local MP) voting with the Government in favour of the final Brexit deal, on the condition that there is a People’s Vote and that the deal is approved in this vote. This scenario sees an eight-point lead for Labour over the Conservatives (48% vs. 40%). This pattern holds for both sub-samples.

    The preference for a People’s Vote is also suggested by the results for the final question. As we can see, when offered with the two options of (i) a People’s Vote and (ii) leaving the EU without a deal (a ‘no deal’ Brexit), there is a clear preference for a People’s Vote across all samples.

    Q. If the UK Government fails to negotiate a final Brexit deal with the EU, or the UK Parliament rejects the deal, setting the UK on a course to a ‘no deal’ Brexit, which of the following two options would you prefer to happen?

    Overall sample – 54 Lab Leave constituencies 50-59.9% Leave vote sample 60+% Leave vote sample
    % % %
    The UK holds a People’s Vote 47 49 44
    The UK leaves the European Union without a deal (a ‘no deal’ Brexit) 41 41 42
    Don’t know 11 9 13
    Refuse 1 1 1

     

    Summary of ICM Voting Intentions figures at each question for each sample: ICM VI figures – Q3, 5-9

    Tables for the overall sample of 54 Labour Leave constituencies, n=1535: Represent-Us-Labour-Leave-Poll-BPC – 19.11.18

    Tables for the sub-sample of the 27 constituencies with a Leave vote share of 50-59.9%: Represent-Us-Labour-Leave-Poll-50-59.9-BPC – 19.11.18

    Tables for the sub-sample of the 27 constituencies with a Leave vote share of 60+%: Represent-Us-Labour-Leave-Poll-60-plus-BPC – 19.11.18

    ICM interviewed a sample of 1,535 adults aged 18+ in the relevant constituencies online between 2 and 13 November 2018. Demographic quotas were set to ensure a representative sample. At the analysis stage, data has been weighted to the profile of each of the target populations: the 50-59.9% Leave constituencies (n=785), the 60+% Leave constituencies (n=750), and the overall sample (n=1,535). ICM is a member of the British Polling Council and abides by its rules.

  • Voting Intentions – October 2018

    In our latest voting intentions poll, carried out just before the Autumn Budget, there was once again very little movement. The Conservatives remain narrowly ahead of Labour, with the Lib Dems remaining at 9%. Having said that, 38% for Labour does mark their lowest result in our polling since the 2017 General Election, perhaps reflecting the party’s reduced media presence over the last few weeks.

    With a budget that apparently went down well with the public, the Conservatives will be hoping that their lead will have grown by the time of our next Voting Intentions poll in November.

    Conservative: 40% (-1)
    Labour: 38% (-2)
    Lib Dem: 9% (nc)
    SNP: 3% (nc)
    PC: 1% (+1)
    Green: 3% (nc)
    UKIP: 5% (+1)
    Other: *% (nc)

    ICM Unlimited interviewed a representative online sample of 2,048 adults aged 18+ between 26-28 October 2018. Interviews were conducted across the country and the results have bee weighted to the profile of all adults. ICM is a member of the British Polling Council and abides by its rules.

    Download tables in PDF

  • Competition law research for the CMA

    New research from ICM Unlimited on behalf of the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) highlights levels of awareness and understanding of competition law among UK businesses. The findings are based on a representative telephone sample of 1,200 UK businesses where respondents are senior individuals with responsibility for sales in their business.

    Key findings:

    • A majority of businesses are aware of key anti-competitive behaviours, e.g. that price fixing with other companies can lead to imprisonment (60%) and that it can be illegal to attend a meeting where competitors agree prices (59%).
    • However, many companies do not know enough about how to comply with competition law. Just under six in ten (57%) businesses recognise that it’s illegal ‘for competitors to agree prices in order to avoid losing money’; the remaining 43% is split equally between those who say it’s okay or do not know.
    • Moreover, there is uncertainty around issues such as reselling and the consequences of reporting cartel activity. For instance, a third (34%) are aware that it is unlawful to set the price at which others resell their product(s), whilst only 18% are aware that they can gain immunity from admitting to participation in a cartel.
    • A large majority (95%) rate compliance with competition law as important yet over half (57%) believe the risk of breaching it is low within their sector.
    • Nine in ten (88%) claim they would take action if illegal activity was taking place within their own business, while three quarters (77%) claim they would do so if it were taking place within a competing business.

    Additional findings are set out in the infographic below designed by ICM for the CMA.

    For the full executive summary and report, please click here.

    For further information from the Competitions and Markets Authority on this survey, please follow this link: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/cma-sends-tough-message-to-business-cheats-with-cartel-campaign

    CMA infographic FOR WEBSITE

    For high-quality PDF click here

  • ICM shortlisted for MRS award

    ICM Unlimited has been shortlisted in the Public Policy / Social Research category for its work with the MS Society using innovative participatory research methods.

    Our colleagues in Walnut Unlimited – of which ICM is the specialist social research arm – have been nominated for two awards: Young Researcher of the Year and Breakthrough Business of the Year.

    Winners will be announced on Monday 3rd December.

  • The Guardian – September 2018 Poll 2

    Right in the middle of conference season, we wanted to check on how the public perceived the two main parties, and leaders across a range of policy areas.

     

    We last asked the ‘which party would do the best job’ question back in February. The latest results, compared to then, are shown below

     

      Labour Conservatives Labour lead Feb-18
    Protecting people from threats at home and abroad 23% 39% -16% -15%
    Negotiating a good Brexit deal for the UK 21% 31% -10% -13%
    Controlling immigration 19% 38% -19% -15%
    Managing the economy properly 26% 40% -14% -12%
    Ensuring pupils and students get a good education 36% 30% 6% 9%
    Protecting the environment 29% 26% 3% n/a
    Protecting the interests of pensioners 36% 26% 10% 13%
    Making Britain a fairer country 37% 26% 11% 13%
    Improving public services generally 42% 23% 19% 21%
    Protecting and improving the NHS 41% 26% 15% 23%

     

    While there have not been large shifts in the perceptions of the parties, we can see that compared to February, Labour have a reduced lead over the Conservatives in pretty much all key policy areas. The only exception is on negotiating a good Brexit deal for the UK, were Labour now lag behind the Conservatives by 10 percentage points, rather than 13.

     

    In the midst of Labour conference – with this poll carried out over the conference weekend – this will not be especially welcome reading for Labour delegates. With what appeared to be very public humiliations for the government’s Brexit plans last week and associated no-deal warnings in many diverse areas of government, it would have been reasonable to hope for a stronger Labour performance on these metrics.

     

    And when looking at the leaders, things don’t get much better for those on the left of British politics. When asked which leader they trust most to do a good job in the same areas we see a similar picture. While there are no large changes when comparing to when we last asked this question, on all areas we ask, Corbyn’s net lead over May has got worse. So where Corbyn had a lead over May this has been reduced, and where Corbyn lagged behind May, this gap has got bigger.

     

      Theresa May Jeremy Corbyn Corbyn lead Jul-18 Jan-18 Sep-17 May-17
    Protecting people from threats at home and abroad 40 20 -20 -19 -17 -18 -30
    Negotiating a good Brexit deal for the UK 30 20 -10 -8 -16 -14 -34
    Controlling immigration 37 18 -19 -16 -15 -19 -29
    Managing the economy properly 37 24 -13 -13 -12 -14 -28
    Ensuring pupils and students get a good education 30 32 2 4 3 8 -4
    Protecting the environment 26 29 3 6 4 n/a n/a
    Protecting the interests of pensioners 24 34 10 9 12 14 -1
    Making Britain a fairer country 27 34 7 11 12 15 1
    Improving public services generally 25 37 12 15 13 16 2
    Protecting and improving the NHS 26 38 12 12 18 18 3

     

    Looking at the data in this way also allows us to understand how each leader is performing relative to the perceptions of their party.

     

    Theresa May does very slightly outperform her party in three areas but is outperformed by her party on four areas. However, things are even worse for Corbyn who fails to outperform his party on even one of the policy areas we ask. This make for concerning reading for those in Southside: while Theresa May might be failing to energise the Conservative brand, it appears that if anything Corbyn is dragging down perceptions of Labour in the eyes of the public, rather than boosting them higher through his leadership.

     

    And on to voting intentions, there is yet again little change. The two main parties trade a percentage point between each other, to leave us with a one point Tory lead. And if there has been a conference boost for the Lib Dems, it has been small. They go up one percentage point to 9%; while a modest gain, we haven’t seen them any higher in our polling since the General Election.

     

    Conservative 41% (-1)
    Labour 40% (+1)
    LibDem 9% (+1)
    SNP 3% (nc)
    PC *% (nc)
    Green 3% (nc)
    UKIP 4% (nc)
    Other *% (nc)

     

    ICM Unlimited interviewed a representative online sample of 2,006 adults aged 18+, between 21st – 24th September 2018. Interviews were conducted across the country and the results have been weighted to the profile of all adults. ICM is a member of the British Polling Council and abides by its rules.