Health, education, housing: this is what worries the French the most

In a landscape marked by rising inflation and unprecedented tensions over purchasing power, which affect all citizens, but especially the most vulnerable, the French Institute of Public Opinion (Ifop), on behalf of the National Union of Municipal Centers for Social Action (UNCASS), led research on the perception of social action during the second wave of its barometer.

Social action seen as a pillar of solidarity

For the vast majority of French people, social action above all, it embodies the spirit of solidarity and help to vulnerable individuals. According to the investigation, 66% of respondents believe that its main goal is to support the most vulnerable in times of crisis, while 54% believe that it must reduce inequalities. The priority target audience is still the most vulnerable French (43%), homeless people (28%), elderly people (28%) and isolated people (22%).

Priorities and concerns: health, education, housing

The priority areas of social action remain unchanged compared to the previous year, with health in leadership (88%), followed by education (81%) and food (74%). However, growing concerns arise over housing72% of the French consider this area a priority, a significant increase of 8 points from 2023. This increase in concern for real estate occurs despite the increase in energy prices, which remains a less priority area (54%).

The evolution of judgement: increasing satisfaction but constant dissatisfaction

Although the judgment of social action has evolved positively since 2023, with satisfaction increasing to 41%, the majority of French (59%) are still dissatisfied. This dissatisfaction varies by income and political affiliation, with almost half of the wealthy French (47%) declaring themselves satisfied, compared to only 38% among the poor. The reasons for this dissatisfaction mainly include perceived inefficiency and fear of an increase in the number of assistants.

Trust in public services and distrust in political elites

In the context of widespread distrust towards political and economic elites, the public service remains the most legitimate actor for responding to crises and carry out social action, according to 84% of the French. In the event of a major crisis, public institutions, especially state and local authorities, overwhelmingly prefer private insurance (63% versus 20%). Local actors, such as mayors, also benefit from a higher level of trust than national political representatives.

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