SAFE PAIRS OF HANDS

Nurses are some of the most trusted workers across the world, while politicians still languish at the bottom

Nurses have come out on top as the profession most trusted by the British, while politicians once again ranked right at the bottom.

Nurses were for the first time included in the Ipsos MORI Veracity Index, an annual survey that ranks professionals most trusted by the public. Of 1,019 British participants aged 15 and over, 93% trusted nurses to tell them the truth. Doctors and teachers came next, at 91% and 88%, respectively.

Politicians were once again the least trusted profession. At no point since 1983, when the survey was first conducted, have more than a quarter of the public trusted politicians to tell the truth. This year was exceptionally low, with only 15% of the public trusting politicians, a 6% drop from 2015. The lowest trust score, 13%, was recorded in 2009—the year Britain was rocked by the parliamentary expenses scandal. (Journalists, we’re sad to say, don’t do a whole lot better.)

It’s not just Britain; all over the world, nurses are among the most trusted while politicians languish at the bottom. In the US, nurses were rated the most trusted profession for the 14th straight year in 2015, according to the annual Gallup poll ranking of honesty and ethics. Members of Congress, telemarketers, and lobbyists had the lowest ratings.

In Australia, nurses and firefighters had the highest level of trust (95% each), closely followed by doctors (94%), paramedics (94%) and pharmacists (93%). Politicians ranked at the bottom with a trust level of 15%, according GfK Verein. In fact, in nearly every country (pdf)—including Brazil, Italy, and South Africa—in a 2014 report by GfK Verein, politicians had the lowest trust ranking, while nurses, firefighters, and doctors ended up on top.

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