Charter, universal health care top unity poll

MONTREAL - Respondents to a new poll say the Charter of Rights and Freedoms and universal health care are tops among things that help unite the country.

In the online survey, respondents were asked to rank 11 items in terms of whether they help unite Canadians.

The charter and health care placed well ahead other options in the poll, obtaining 25 per cent and 22 per cent of first-place votes, respectively.

Hockey and the country's "shared history" placed a distant third and fourth, with 12 per cent and 11 per cent of the first-place votes, respectively.

Respondents were asked: "What keeps Canada united?" and they had 11 options to choose from.

The online poll of 1,509 respondents was conducted ahead of Canada Day by Leger Marketing for the Association for Canadian Studies.

The polling industry's professional body says online surveys cannot be assigned a margin of error as they are not a random sample and don't necessarily represent the whole population.