December 20, 2021 10:00am

Serafin Power Poll: Broad Support for Vaccine Passport in Chicago

Omicron variant not sparking a rethink of holiday plans

By Thom Serafin
Chicago, IL Correspondent
 

Happy Holidays! We know things aren’t back to normal yet, but this holiday season certainly feels a little more joyful than last year.

Just as the holiday season was getting into full swing, Chicago reported its first case of the omicron COVID variant, which is reportedly more mild but also more transmissible. With this new threat, we asked Serafin Power Pollers if they would be adjusting their celebrations. The majority of respondents (59%) said they aren’t concerned about omicron impacting their holiday plans, while 29% said they would be reconsidering the size of their holiday gatherings and another 13% said they are reconsidering travel.

In response to the omicron variant appearing in Chicago, City public health Commissioner Dr. Arwady suggested Chicago may require proof of vaccination for public spaces, saying, “I certainly am more intersted in that than I am in needing to do some of the major shutdowns.” We asked Serafin Power Pollers if they are supportive of this type of policy, and the vast majority (83%) said they were, while 17% said they were unsupportive.

We asked if the recent rash of smash and grabs in the Gold Coast dissuaded Serafin Power Pollers from visiting area stores and restaurants this holiday season. 54% said the crime has convinced them to stay away from the area and do their holiday shopping elsewhere, while 46% said they’re still patronizing stores and restaurants along the Mag Mile.

A multi-year pandemic has the ability to dramatically shift a person’s priorities: maybe those who were previously more materialistic feel less enthralled with gifts and presents. Or maybe you’ve found a new sense of joy in searching for the perfect gift to show someone you care. That’s why we asked Serafin Power Pollers if they would be doing more or less gift giving this holiday season. The majority (57%) said they’ll be doing less this year, while 43% said they would be doing more present swapping than in previous years.

The COVID pandemic has exacerbated inequalities, laid bare ideological differences and generally made us wary of being too close together. But as we close out a second tumultuous year, maybe – just maybe – there is a little more kindness, caring and compassion this holiday season. We asked Serafin Power Pollers for their experiences and the majority (71%) said the holiday spirit was not any deeper or about the same as non-COVID years. But 29% said they are feeling a little more holiday joy and kindness this year.

Our vote is that there is a little more holiday cheer this year! From all of us at Team Serafin, we’re wishing you a warm and joyful holiday season.

A total of 400 Serafin Power Poll members were surveyed and the participation rate was 28%. The Serafin Power Poll is not a scientific poll, but rather a fascinating and non-partisan glimpse into the attitudes and opinions of the decision-makers and thought leaders in the Chicago region.

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