Poll: Santa Ana Voters Strongly Support Anti-Obesity Policies

Santa Ana voters are more receptive to government policies to alleviate the obesity epidemic than are voters statewide, according to the results of a just-released survey by The Field Poll.

Nearly nine in 10 Santa Ana voters support policies aimed at increasing the availability of healthful foods like fresh fruits and vegetables through farmers markets, community gardens, produce stands and supermarkets, according to the survey, which was commissioned by The California Endowment.

Approval of such policies was 10 to 12 percent higher in Santa Ana than it was among voters statewide, the survey found.

There is also significantly more support in Santa Ana — 54 percent to 40 percent — for a tax on sugar-sweetened beverages than there is statewide. And the support grows to 80 percent if proceeds for such a tax would be used to improve school nutrition and physical activity programs.

On the other hand, the survey found that fewer voters in Santa Ana than statewide — 28 percent compared with 40 percent — are aware of health promotion activities by states and local communities.

The authors of the survey observed that Santa Ana’s demographics are different from those statewide. Santa Ana is more Latino, has more registered Democrats and is far younger than statewide averages, the survey showed.

Santa Ana is one of 14 California communities targeted by The California Endowment’s Building Healthy Communities Initiative. The endowment has pledged to dedicate hundreds of millions of dollars over the course of this decade to “radically improve” the health of these communities.

The Field Poll, established in 1947, is an independent, nonpartisan survey of California public opinion.

Please contact David Washburn directly at dwashburn@voiceofoc.org.