According to a new survey, 76% of Australians oppose any further cuts to the ABC’s budget and 49% believe it should get more Federal Government funding
The findings of a Roy Morgan national opinion poll serve as a warning to the Government that voters have had enough of budget cuts to the national broadcaster. Successive Governments have reduced ABC funding by a total of $783 million since 2014.
The survey shows Australians overwhelmingly turn to the ABC in times of crisis, underlining the national broadcaster’s critical role in the bushfire crisis and the COVID-19 pandemic. ABC Friends commissioned the opinion poll, which was carried out by the independent research group, Roy Morgan.
The poll found that 71% of adult Australians value the ABC for its independence and 77% say they can rely on it for accurate information. There is little support for claims that the ABC is biased – only 13% do not value the ABC for its independence and only 12% disagree that it can be relied on for accurate information.
49% of people told the pollsters that Government funding for the ABC should be increased, 27% believe funding should be maintained at current levels and only 9% support further cuts.
Roy Morgan reported verbatim comments from survey respondents including:
- ‘The ABC has great value to Australians.’
- ‘Every Australian is somehow connected to the ABC.’
- ‘Vital to all our lives. Especially for rural services like weather and timely bushfire alerts!!! Reporters who are strong and not afraid to ask hard questions to shifty politicians.’
- ‘Priceless (but worth heaps more than the slashed funding currently on offer).’
Commenting on the survey, ABC Friends Victorian President Peter Monie said:
‘Budget cuts threaten the very ABC services that Australians value – crisis information, news and current affairs, educational children’s programming, the Arts and quality drama.
‘There is strong community support for the ABC across the community. Voters of all political persuasions value the ABC – something the Government should consider as it plans the Federal Budget. The ABC’s performance during the bushfires and the COVID-19 crisis was exemplary and came at great cost. The ABC should be strengthened in the Budget, not further slashed.’
ABC Friends VIC
Ph: 0416 009 339