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Survey shows 95% of people believe having ICAC a good thing for NSW

Tuesday 29 June 2010

Ninety-five per cent of people believe having the Independent Commission Against Corruption (ICAC) is a good thing for the people of NSW, according to responses to the Commission's latest community attitudes survey.

The ICAC's Community Attitudes to Corruption and to the ICAC: Report on the 2009 survey, released today, shows consistent results with responses from the last survey conducted in 2006, when 93% indicated that they thought having the Commission was a good thing. The ICAC has been periodically conducting these surveys since 1993.

Approximately two-thirds of the sample indicated that the ICAC has been successful in exposing corruption, and about half indicated that it had been successful in reducing corruption. Roughly 75% would be willing to provide the ICAC with information about serious corruption, despite 63% agreeing that people who report corruption are likely to suffer for doing so.

"The responses to the 2009 survey show that the community has confidence in the ICAC and its work," the ICAC Commissioner the Hon David Ipp AO QC said. "It is pleasing to note that 73% of respondents thought that the Commission has been successful at exposing corruption in NSW and that more than half the respondents thought the ICAC has been successful in reducing the level of corruption in NSW.

"While these are positive results, the Commission is committed to pursuing the ongoing fight against corruption in NSW and will continue robustly to do so through its investigative and corruption prevention work," Commissioner Ipp said.

While there were some similarities between the 2009 and earlier survey results, there were also some differences; significantly more people perceived corruption to be a major or minor problem in 2009 than in 2006, 87% in the most recent survey compared with 72% in 2006.

There was also a significant shift in perceptions of corruption at the state government level. Those who thought corruption was a major problem in state government departments increased from 27% in 2006 to 41% in 2009, while it remained at 35 % in local councils for both years.

Other responses of note from the 2009 survey include that
• 53% indicated that corruption affects them or their family, compared with 42% in 2006.
• 86% of respondents could either name or recognise the ICAC.
• 92% indicated that they recalled at least one real media story about the ICAC (from a selection of true and fictitious news stories).

The survey was undertaken over an approximately three-week period beginning in mid-October 2009. The sample was randomly selected from NSW adults, with quotas applied regarding age, gender and place of residence. In total, 501 individuals responded to the survey.

2009 Community Attitudes Survey Report