New Poll Shows Arizonans Want Action on Homelessness

Phoenix, AZ, March 18, 2024 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — New findings in a survey of Arizona voters, commissioned by the Cicero Institute, show Arizona voters are deeply concerned about the rise in homelessness and want more urgent action from elected leaders to address the fentanyl and opioid crisis.

“These findings should serve as a clarion call to Arizona policymakers,” said Bryan Sunderland, Director of Advocacy. “Arizonans want leaders to respond with urgency as crime, drugs, and homelessness in their communities continue to rise. State and municipal officials must advance solutions that will address these pressing public safety concerns.”

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Author of the poll and Cicero Director of Communications Stefani Buhajla added, “These results are not at all surprising. Arizona has been battling crisis levels of drug trafficking and homelessness for years. Voters want leadership on these issues.”

Key highlights from the survey:

HOMELESSNESS

  • Addressing Homelessness: The survey highlights significant concerns regarding homelessness, with 74% of all voters believing it is increasing in Arizona. 
  • Panhandling: 72% of voters report avoiding gas stations and convenience stores where individuals are loitering or panhandling.
  • Public Camping: A staggering 77% report that they avoid restaurants and parks where homeless individuals are sleeping on the streets. And 73% agree homeless encampments on streets are a threat to public safety.
  • Preference for Designated Camping Areas: An overwhelming majority (93%) of voters prefer establishing designated camping areas with security, sanitation, and water over allowing homeless individuals to camp wherever they choose. And 68% say they should be designated as drug-free zones. 

DRUG CRIME

  • Drug Trafficking: Alarmingly, 59% say drug trafficking is on the rise in Arizona.
  • Combating Fentanyl and Opioids: 63% feel that more should be done to combat the fentanyl and opioid crisis in the state.

RETAIL THEFT

  • Concerns about Retail Theft: Most voters (75%) say the level of retail theft in Arizona is not improving. Only 12% of voters say elected officials are doing enough about the problem, while 55% think they need to do more.
  • Alarm over Smash-and-Grab Robberies: A majority (53%) of all voters express considerable concern about smash-and-grab retail robberies in larger cities such as Phoenix and Tucson.

LAW ENFORCEMENT

  • Police Resources: 67% say that Arizona law enforcement agencies do not have enough manpower or financial resources to handle the current level of crime in the state.
  • Support for Business Measures: 74% of voters would consider offering tax credits to businesses that hire private security to protect their employees and customers due to lack of police presence.

The survey, conducted from March 5–9, 2024, included 1,090 likely Arizona voters. The margin of error is ±2.97%.

Cicero Institute is a nonprofit, nonpartisan public policy organization working to fix broken government systems by defending liberty, instituting accountability, and promoting innovative governance across America.

Attachments

  • Arizona Public Safety Poll Crosstabs
  • Arizona Public Safety Poll One-pager

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