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City survey shows a drop in resident satisfaction


City survey shows a drop in resident satisfaction

Members of Hamilton City Council got deep into the weeds at the General Issues Committee meeting when staff presented the latest Our City Survey—the second annual survey of Hamilton residents about their level of satisfaction with City Services.

The Our City Survey results showed that overall, the majority 63% of phone respondents indicated they were either satisfied or very satisfied with City of Hamilton services. Further results reveal:

•             Highest Rated Services: Emergency Services (Fire and Paramedics), Libraries and Bookmobiles, Cemetery, and Parks/Open Space.

•             Lowest Rated Services: Social Housing, Roads and Sidewalks, Services for Seniors Including Long-term Care, Traffic Flow and Roadway Safety, and Wastewater Management, and Building Permits.

•             The majority (72%) of the phone survey respondents who had contacted the City of Hamilton in the past year felt that their overall experience contacting the City of Hamilton was positive.

•             Most respondents from the phone survey agreed or strongly agreed that Hamilton is a great place to live, work, play and learn. The survey was conducted via telephone and online in late 2019, to help the City better understand the needs and perceptions of Hamiltonians with respect to the range of municipal services offered across the community; value for tax dollars; as well as quality of life and well-being.

Despite the level of satisfaction expressed the overall level was somewhat lower than was obtained in the first of the Our City Surveys conducted a year earlier, there was a slightly lower level of satisfaction and a slightly higher level of dissatisfaction.

Councillor Tom Jackson was alarmed that the survey showed a drop in satisfaction for senior’s services from 67 percent to 44 percent. Macassa Lodge is in the Councillors ward and he disputed the figure, pointing out that surveys taken within Macassa show a 95 percent satisfaction rate.

Quick Facts

•             The telephone version of the survey called 134,287 randomly selected Hamilton-based phone numbers across all wards and 5,771 phone surveys were completed, this being a statistically representative sample of the Hamilton population.

•             The online survey collected 3,374 surveys where a response was provided for at least one survey question.

•             The online survey supplemented the telephone survey; however, results from the two data sources should not be compared due to the self-selection bias of the online survey. The results from the online survey cannot be considered to be a statistically representative sample of the population.

•             For the 2018 Citizen Survey, the results were posted on the City’s web-based Trust & Confidence website  and released as part of an open data-set (accessible via

•             Given the increase in the 2019 Our City Survey sample size, ward-level results are also part of the open data set that has been released, in addition to the City-wide data. The City-wide report includes a section of the ward level results as well. Ward-level infographics were also created for each of the 15 wards to highlight key results.

Commented City Manager Janette Smith, “It’s important to us to gather and understand the opinions and perceptions from residents about the municipal services we deliver to them each day. Residents deserve and expect high quality municipal services for their tax dollars. The survey findings help us identify the areas that are working well and the areas where we can improve.”

Staff are recommending that the survey be conducted every three years.

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